The Creative AI Demonstrator Project, funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) and the Department for Culture Media and Sport (DCMS), is exploring the potential for using AI, and specifically Creative AI, in the creative industries in Scotland. In addition to looking at Creative AI more broadly, we are also running a funding call for rapid turnaround Creative AI Music & Audio Pilot Projects.
The Creative AI Demonstrator project expands on some of the fantastic work we’ve seen over the last 5 years of Creative Informatics – both projects we’ve engaged with, and work we see emerging from the wider creative community across Scotland. Now we want your help to shape what we could do to support new ideas and innovations from the creative industries with AI.
We have been watching the development of Creative AI – which rests upon the use of data and data driven innovation in the creative industries – for some time. Back in 2021 we wrote about the potential for Creative AI for the CRAIC blog and we have since seen a huge increase in interest and projects using AI across Creative Informatics and the wider creative industries. We have a particular interest in the ethical use of AI and have been excited to see how Scotland’s AI Strategy is encouraging responsible and ethical use of these technologies.
Additionally, Creative AI has been much more visible – and coming into widespread public use – over the last six months, due to the availability of Large Language Models (particularly ChatGPT), and generative AI tools such as the text to image platforms DALL:E 2 and MidJourney. These tools raise real challenges for the creative industries around creativity, originality, intellectual property, and ethics. However, AI including generative AI, also has huge potential as a tool for creative work, as part of an ideation process, and as a way to experiment, particularly when these tools are in the hands of creatives, and used in an ethical and appropriate way. We’ve seen some great local examples of this coming through exploratory projects like Martin Disley’s Resident Entrepreneur project with the National Library of Scotland, the fantastic art works emerging from The New Real, as well as innovative start-ups emerging from our cluster, such as DataMind Audio’s ground-breaking music production work (as recently showcased on Mr Bill’s Podcast #120), through to the lively improv AI session run by Abandoman (aka Rob Broderick) at our most recent CI Lab 23: Festival Futures.
We think there is far more potential for AI and machine learning (ML) in creative work, whether that’s using AI behind the scenes to support much more strategic use of data, to enable work to be made in new and/or more efficient ways, to work with much larger datasets than have been possible before, or to help discovery, search and use. We particularly want to explore Creative AI in music and sound, an area we see creatives in Scotland having particularly strong expertise and start-up ideas in – whether coming from music production, filmmaking, gaming, work with voices and speech, work with audio archives, and wider perspectives.
What happens next?
Over the coming months we will be running a survey (May-July), scoping workshops, and a new funding call (closing 23rd June) that will help us understand the potential for Creative AI. In particular we want to understand what kinds of support, training, advice, funding, etc. might enable innovation in this space, particularly in Scotland. We will be publishing a report at the end of the project but we will also be using our research to inform future discussion with funders around the needs of the creative sector in Scotland.
Help us explore the potential for Creative AI in Scotland
Apply to our Pilot projects call for Music and Audio use of Creative AI
Our Creative AI Music & Audio Pilot Projects Call is now open. In this call, open to all creatives in Scotland, we are looking to support small scale rapid R&D projects that explore Creative AI in the context of music and audio. We are asking for proposals up to £5k, and are hoping to fund 10 projects through this call which will create new Minimum Viable Products (MVPs). An MVP is an early, basic version of a product that demonstrates minimum necessary requirements and enables you to validate a product idea. We welcome both initial development of new products and services, as well as new kinds of creative experiences.
Want to know more? Join the Creative Informatics team for an online Q&A on Thursday 1 June. Sign up now.
The call opened on 15 May, and closes on DEADLINE EXTENDED MONDAY 26 JUNE at 5pm.
At the end of the project in late 2023 we will have an event which will showcase all of the projects we have supported, along with the report we will be creating, and its recommendations for creatives, industry and funders.
Respond to our survey
We would love to understand your interest and the potential for Creative AI in Scotland, what is inspiring you in this space in your wider creative industries networks and parts of the world. Where would you like to see support? What would you need to be able to use or explore AI in new creative ways? What are you concerned about? Where do you see challenges in these technologies?
Take part in our scoping workshops
We will be running scoping workshops and networking events in Edinburgh, Glasgow, Dundee and online. We are particularly keen to hear from people working in or interested in working with AI in their creative practice – whether a start up with products/new ideas in this space, or creative practitioners exploring AI in their work.
- Edinburgh – details coming soon
- Glasgow – details coming soon
- Dundee – details coming soon
- Online – details coming soon
Email firstname.lastname@example.org to be notified when bookings go live for these events.