Yes is the short answer. Not yet is an expansion on that thought. If you want you may now read the rest of this article.
What is possible with AI and video production right now?
I'm writing this in January of 2023, for whatever context that gives you. AI is so hot right now (Zoolander reference) as ChatGPT 3 and Midjourney dominate the scene. And yes, I used Midjourney to create the thumbnail for this post. But there are other AI tools out there, as well as several that call themselves AI but are really just clever programming. That's my inner nerd coming out, but the point is that it seems like a lot of the industry is going AI or at least really good automation. So what can be done with video right now?
Turns out, very little. However that may change soon. We already have AI video generation that, while rudimentary for now, has the capacity to create video with text prompts. We have DeepFakes, de-aging, text-to-voiceover that can be matched to a specific voice. You can create your own video content with just a script using AI curated stock footage. Seems like a lot, yeah? The thing is, they're all not great - yet. Hence the "very little" start to this paragraph. They're not very good now, but wait a year or two and they'll be passable at least.
A brief history of technology
When we think of technology, we often think of computers and Moore's Law which states every five years processing power doubles meaning we experience an exponential growth. But really what's also exponential is our growth speed as human beings. Take a look at this chart:
The Renaissance lasted roughly 200 years. The Industrial Revolution less than 100. The Gilded Age, a time of invention, was only about 30 years. Once the Digital Revolution really got off to a major start it took about 15 years. Youtube reached 30 million subscribers in just seven years, and the iPhone did it in five. AI is the next major technological breakthrough. So it is poised to be fully integrated into society within two years. They've even predicted that we'll reach Singularity - the point at which AI is smarter than humans - in just seven years. That is both terrifying and exciting, but that's not what this article is about. The point is this technology is here to stay, and it's moving fast.
The future of video production
Long term, we might have robot camera operators. We might not have to shoot at all. Heck, we might not have to work at all. But in the near future, all that AI is going to do for video is enhance our workflow as creatives. That is the most empowering thing that I can draw from all of this. It will allow me and my team to utilize the tools in order to do more, do it faster, and do it better. It will allow for the further democratization of things like special effects and high-end graphic design which can be modified even easier than a template. Great camera work and the creative eye are not going to be replaced anytime soon (but someday). What is going away soon is the tedious tasks that slow us down in our creativity. Things like finding the best take, sorting usable footage, labelling and marking, even cutting between cameras will all soon be up to a robot. But we are still touching human hearts with our videos, so the human factor remains important. For now.
Why I love making videos
One day I said "Yes, I'm giving up on my dreams. I'm going to be an engineer." That did not last one day before I realized that was not going to suit me. Now, I could have been an engineer. I had some advanced math under my belt, and I enjoyed thinking logically, reasoning my way through situations. The problem was, I also enjoyed thinking creatively. Abstractly. I enjoyed storytelling, I enjoyed having a vision in my head of a shot, then thinking logically about how I was going to pull it off. I wanted a career that was going to engage my whole brain. I wanted that balance of something highly technical and highly creative. Nothing that I've discovered quite hits that mark like video. Of course, passions grow and shift, and nowadays I enjoy the business side of things as much as the actual video creation itself. I enjoy marketing - again, something with very technical operation skills that still requires a great deal of creativity. And that is what I love about the challenge and opportunity AI presents us. It's mastering another technology and seeing how I can bend it to my creative will.
This is gonna be fun.
- The author suggests that AI is currently a hot topic in the industry and is expected to be fully integrated into society within two years.
- They predict that in the near future, AI will enhance workflow and democratize special effects and graphic design in video production.
- The author notes that while technology is advancing quickly, the human touch remains important in video production, as it is the human touch that touches human hearts, and the use of AI presents an opportunity for balancing technical and creative skills.