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Diana Nicholette Jeon

Although many may be threatened by AI, there are some who are thrilled. Diana Nicholette Jeon, is one of those.  In her career, she has been through wave after wave of technical change, critical uproar, and eventual resolution and she sees the AI revolution as just another wave.  Part of the surface appeal of current AI apps is that they routinely turn out wild, surreal, and sometimes surprisingly “arty” images; but  Jeon rejects using AI to turn out “insta-Van Gogh and insta-Picasso” results.  She treats AI image-making tools as a new and challenging way to generate material for her unique and already mature conceptual and aesthetic framework. Her challenge is to find ways to use AI tools to make images that fit her personal style, that connect to her life and experience, and that continue to tell her own story.  The work in this month’s portfolio gives us a look at both the artworks and the process behind the product — the patience, intelligent experimentation, and, often, the fun that are the components that Diana mixes together to make images that are very clearly her own and very clearly extraordinary.

"I am interested in the message before the tool. I am an artist who uses photo media and not a photographer, per se. I'm not a studio photographer, I do fine art, not client or editorial work, and I prefer simple cameras to complex ones. I'd rather have a pinhole than a pricey lens. And since I hate to carry equipment, I go light — I have been shooting on phones since before the iPhone. I keep my old phones for what they do well and use them the way some people would change lenses. I look at the problem as, "What do I need to do, what materials do I need, how do I need to present it?" to get this message across, rather than  "What photo do I want to take next?" I combine media to underscore my ideas rather than being limited to specific media.  Everything flows from the concept I am working with before all else."

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