Blogpost July 6 2021

Played around today with a random generator for Colour Time. I’m thinking of releasing an series of on-chain Colour Time animations, but I’m undecided as of yet whether I will make them manually or generative.

The advantage of generative is that the scale can be larger, and it speaks to the nature of the collectible NFT market.

But the problem of generative is that there is very little possibility for artistic expression, and you’re often just wrangling the generative system, bounding it in enough so that it creates image that are pleasing.

I don’t really find that type of work very interesting, and this is partly what I’m expressing in the Proof of Work series; that there is some specific value to art that is the direct result of the hand of the artist.

We can see the generative process as a sort of artistic tool, akin to AI, but I feel often the tool itself becomes revered rather than seen as just a tool.

A generative release does invite the audience into the artistic process; they work directly with the tool, often generating a random output. The artist and audience discover the series of works together, and the market makes judgements around which images are the most valuable.

Perhaps we can see the generative process as a way of adding variability to the concrete nature of digital creation; a way of adding a bit of randomness into an a quite specific vision.

If we look at Fidenza, this perspective makes sense. All the outputs belong clearly to the same family, and we can understand the bounds of the system by looking at the outputs as whole.

For Colour Time, because the visual structure is so minimal, I think these explorations are showing me that I should be making each one manually.