The VFX house has issued a statement to explain the thinking behind its recently posted vacancy for a Generative AI Artist

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Framestore has had a mixed reaction to a statement it released on Twitter/X that attempted to explain the rationale behind one of its latest job vacancies, for a Generative AI Artist.

The job description, which has now been removed from Framestore’s website, advertises for a Generative AI Artist to work in London in the VFX giant’s advertising, episodic and immersive division.

Part of the job description read: “Framestore London is looking for a Generative AI Artist to join us for an exciting and innovative AI project. This is initially a freelance opportunity with room to grow into a longer-term role”.

Framestore wanted someone with “technical capacity with the various [AI] tools” and “a keen knowledge of the AI landscape and the enthusiasm to embrace this teach”.

The artist was to “mould and shape workflow and processes on our AI projects.”

The job specification said: “You will need understanding and experience in using datasets of images to train bespoke models and extensions to generate consistent images in a given style or of a particular object. You will have extensive understanding and experience using ControlNet and AnimDiff to condition images and bring them to life through animation”.

The response to the job specification from the VFX community led Framestore to issue the following statement:

Yesterday, one of our job postings, for an AI Artist, caused some concern among our community. While the project is confidential, the new hire will work in collaboration with an illustrator on a campaign for a good cause. We will commission an original piece of art from the illustrator and use various VFX techniques including AI to bring it to life. This will be done in part by animating specific keyframes, plus the training of private bespoke models and extensions, which will in turn be driven from original footage we shoot.

We’ve been open about our views on AI and machine learning and have given interviews on how we use these tools and see them changing the industry. Our use primarily revolves around facilitating human creativity, helping our teams of artists get to the result faster. We believe AI can aid artists’ work, enabling them to do more of what they love.

We remain committed to the artists who work for us and to combining talent with technology to advance the art of storytelling.

This, though, wasn’t enough to put minds at rest, with the statement receiving more than 245 replies so far, the majority of which are sceptical at best about the motivations behind the VFX house adopting AI in this way.

One reply, which was typical of the criticism levelled at the VFX house, said: “Ah, so commission a piece from an artist and chuck it in the AI to replicate their style and not have to pay for more commissions in the future, is that it?”

Meanwhile, others praised Framestore for its innovation. One of the replies said: “It’s no surprise that you are exploring Gen AI. As a creative tool, it’s way too powerful to ignore, and the fact that we, as creatives, are exploring the potential will help shape our future tools into tools that will empower creatives and enable us to tell stories in ways we could only dream of yesterday.”