What is Computer-Generated Art and how it works?

What is Computer-Generated Art and how it works?

By carolc

Computer-generated art, also known as algorithmic art, it refers to any piece of image, video, music or tangible material with an aesthetic or artistic purpose created entirely by a computer with some human control. It is a digital art method which involves digital technology in the subject, creation process or either its final form of artwork by running some processes that do not have direct human intervention. Algorithmic artists are called themselves algorists.

Computer-generated can cover all trends or styles of art where the role of the computer is emphasized, becoming the main conductor of the creative process without human artist emotions being involved, but with no less beautiful results. The human part is to give to the computer the creative process framework by developing a program with specific inputs that will establish the form the product will take, then run it and finally select between several generated artworks.

This time, we will be talking not just what computer-generated art is, besides we will be introducing you its different types and some available tools and applications that let us create some artworks.

Types of Computer-Generated Art

We can find every kind of artwork made by computers, either visual, audible or tangible. There are pieces of music, visual art, architecture, literature and even something called software art.

Inside the computer-generated art we have different types like:

Generative art 

Generative art refers to a work of art generated completely or parts of it by using an autonomous system, that is it have a certain degree of independency; this might be a machine or a software with some kind of programmed living rules that can take decisions or determine certain nuances recreating the own ideas of the artist.

Cellular automata art

Cellular automata artist based on computational models with a high morphological behavior that define a discrete dynamic system where each cell depends on its own state. Normally it consists of a matrix where each cell depends on its own state and can take specific and independent actions as long as it does not go against the general rules which define automata behavior.

Fractal art

Fractal art is a computed-generated art that involves use of mathematics to create self-similar and independent of scale graphics known as Fractals. Its beauty relies on fractals nature itself. Fractals needs a powerful computer processing to be calculated and a specific set of mathematics skills. A fractal art piece it can be both visual or sound waves. In this human participates just to give input parameters and rules, like one who breathes life into art.

Random art

Random art intends to generate art by a hash visualization algorithm by taking advantage of the absence of predictable patterns. It converts unintelligible set of strings into abstract structured art. It works based on randomness principles to create a function that generate a number that maps each pixel of an image to a RGB value.

Software art

Software art refers to software creation that intend to be programs or applications considered itself as artwork; that is, created code is the piece of art.

Artificial art

Artificial art is any piece of art generated automatically by an artificial intelligence program. In its process there are two main roles a Generator that works based on an input and a Discriminator which filters the results until get a product that can be considered art.

These are just some of all computer-generated art types, from each one of these or from their combination derive others more. Also, we can find genetic or evolutionary art, deep neural network art, mathematical art, among others.

How to make computed-generated art?

There are so many sites and tools over the internet that we can find to start exploring our artistic potential with some computing help. There is no further artificial intelligence or computer science knowledge in order to use it.

Next, we will mention just a few of them that you can use to generated every form of artistic expression, such music or images:

  • Artificial Intelligence Virtual Artist (AIVA) is an electronic music composer already recognized as an artist by Société des auteurs, compositeurs et éditeurs de musique (SACEM)
  • Deep Dream Generator stylize images by using Google Deep Dream technology.
  • io use the artistic style of one image to modify another.
  • Cartoonifyturn images into a cartoon drawing.
  • Deep Angel removes content from an image.
  • Handwriting with a neural net let play with a neural network that generates strokes based on a writing style input.
  • NSynth Sound Maker allow generate music with instruments and hybrid sounds.
  • Pitch Detection is a tool based on model pre-trained to detect the pitch of a sound.
  • AI Sketches With Bill T. Jones use the PoseNet machine model to build interaction designs created by capturing voice and body movements suggested by Bill T.
  • Scribbling Speech let create animated drawing by speech recognition.
  • Thing Translator converts a text image into an audio translated in another language.
  • GoArt transforms an input image to look alike a famous painting.
  • Processing is a software that teach how to code in order to create visual arts.
  • Quick, Draw! is a game where a neural network intent to guess what is being drawing on it.

And this is to mention just a few, we can find a large amount of tools which allows us  to create almost any type of computed-generated art.

Also, we can explore and enjoy of a vast gallery of art already created, such in AI artists at, AI ART NET at, among others.

So, now it is easier become an artist?

It would be so much presumptuous to think that we are artists already since now we know what computer-generated art is and how we can create some pieces of art. Today, this is precisely subject of controversy and could be offensive to many living human artists and much more to memory of many great artists.

Art by definition is an expression product of human being emotions and beauty, computers itself are a human creation; then, maybe we can say that artists still provides the beginning of any piece of art computer-generated by giving them something like God’s particle to create them. This is a controversy matter and we let it here as something to think about, without disturbs traditionalists feelings!

Actually, what is an undeniable truth is computed-generated art is everywhere today, with a powerful range of possibilities that we could not imagine never before. Let us imagine for a moment how all Salvador Dalí’s dreams would be real today!