Is Artificial Intelligence the Next Major Step for Photographers?

Eye autofocus, insanely fast burst rates, 8K raw video, and more. There is no doubt that camera features are getting better and better at a crazy pace. But the thing I am most excited for is not on a camera, it is in post-processing: artificial intelligence.Photoshop is an incredibly powerful program, no doubt, and it has been moving toward higher levels of automation in recent years, but for the most part, more intricate procedures still require mostly manual control and thus, fair amounts of time investment. I certainly do not mind that sort of investment for passion projects, but on the other hand, for purely work-related projects, I have always been ready to embrace whatever levels of automation that could be found. Such automation has been around for a while, but it has not been until the last few years that it has made major steps forward, and now, I think we are on the cusp of an AI-powered revolution.Luminar 4 and PortraitPro 19I will admit that until just a few days ago, PortraitPro was never seriously on my radar. After seeing a few ads for it many years ago, it just looked like the sort of software that overly smoothed skin and produced unrealistic results. I honestly forgot about it until another Fstoppers writer raved about it to me a few days ago. I trust his opinion, and I am always looking to try new things, so I grabbed my credit card and bought a copy. Suffice to say that I am truly impressed. A typical headshot edit takes me about 20 minutes in Photoshop — 15 if I am really hyperfocused. After spending 10 minutes learning the ropes of PortraitPro, I loaded in an unedited headshot and had a finished image that was just as good as a manual edit in about 90 seconds. And for the occasional blemish it missed, I could open the exported version in Photoshop and run the healing brush over it in maybe 20 seconds. No doubt, the increase in efficiency was impressive.

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