15 AI Art Prompt Ideas You Should TryReading Time: 4 minutes
If you’re new to AI art creation, or simply stuck for ideas, use these prompts as a starting point.
A great way to get started with AI art is to explore different prompts. Prompts are what you use to describe the image you want to create, and they include lots of different information, from specific artist names and art styles to using pop culture icons and exploring fantasy scenes.
Try using the prompt ideas listed below, then experiment with replacing the keywords with different ideas of your own. Soon enough you will get the hang of how to create unique AI art using your own original prompts.
In the Style of a Well-Known Artist
Referencing the masters of art history is a great place to begin if you are stuck for ideas. The simplest prompt structure is to describe a subject or scene, followed by the phrase ‘in the style of’. As for what artist you choose to use, start with a popular historical figure and go from there.
It also works on living artists if they are particularly renowned, but this has caused a lot of problems so far. Since many AI art generators use the images of artists to train their AI models without consent, it’s debatable whether it’s ethically OK to do so. In any case, it has led to many artists choosing to opt out of AI training databases.
We recommend sticking to non-living artists to avoid potential copyright issues that may occur in the future. In the examples below, we chose the artists Frida Kahlo, Rene Magritte, and Tamara de Lempicka; who all have very distinct art styles.
Of course, while art historians might be able to see the flaws in the AI imitations, for the most part, these images do a fair job of capturing the bigger picture.
1. Frida Kahlo
Prompt: ‘Portrait of a girl next to a capybara, in the style of a Frida Kahlo painting’.
2. Rene Magritte
Prompt: ‘Man with a cowboy hat, in the style of Rene Magritte’.
3. Tamara de Lempicka
Prompt: ‘A woman with red hair in the style of Tamara de Lempicka’.
Pop Culture Icons
Another extremely fun prompt to try is using a pop culture icon as the subject. Try thinking of some of your favorite movie characters, comic heroes, or video game protagonists; then add a few key descriptors to set the scene. Some descriptive words that work well are ‘cinematic lighting’ and ‘digital art’, but you can try any lighting effect or art style.
The fan art genre is likely to get a whole lot bigger now that anyone can try using an AI art generator to bring their imagination to life. It might also be useful for fans of the role-playing game Dungeons and Dragons who can now take their character description and generate a unique image for it.
Prompt: ‘Pikachu, cinematic, digital art’.
Prompt: ‘Batman, cinematic lighting, high resolution 3D render’.
6. Storm Trooper
Prompt: ‘Storm trooper in the desert, high-detail, dramatic lighting, digital art’.
AI art is a great place to explore different art styles. Some styles, like ‘Ukiyo-e’ and ‘oil painting’, will give your images a classic fine arts look while using the keyword ‘Unreal Engine 5’ will produce modern images that look like game concept art.
For those who haven’t heard of it before, Unreal Engine 5 is a software that game developers use to build video games. Because of this, prompts that use this keyword look similar to digital art or 3D renders. This art style works incredibly well with the keyword ‘Cyberpunk’ and the natural fit produces beautiful neon-future landscapes.
Over time, you might narrow down your options to just a few art styles that you really enjoy. Once you have a style you like, you can improve your skills by learning a few extra tips and tricks for creating better AI art.
Prompt: ‘Ukiyo-e print of two women visiting a shrine’.
8. Unreal Engine 5
Prompt: ‘Cyberpunk style city street at night, unreal engine 5’.
9. Oil Painting
Prompt: ‘Oil painting of a cottage near a pond, spring time’.
Using the format of a portrait helps to keep your ideas simple but effective. Focus on thinking of a subject for the portrait, then explore different options for the art style. You can get creative by using animals or fictional species like cyborgs. When combined with interesting styles, like ‘watercolor painting’ or ‘photorealistic’, it can really start to shine.
You can also get ideas for your AI portraits by looking at creative self-portrait ideas in photography and using those concepts in your prompts. In fact, learning the language and concepts used in traditional artistic mediums really helps to boost the number of keywords you have in your toolkit when crafting an AI image prompt.
10. Animal Portrait
Prompt: ‘Portrait of a Siamese cat wearing a robe, Chinese watercolor painting’.
11. Sci-Fi Portrait
Prompt: ‘Portrait of a smiling cyborg woman, peaceful, digital art’.
12. Human Portrait
Prompt: ‘Victorian era portrait of an old man wearing a hat, photorealistic’.
Fantasy landscapes are a satisfying idea to explore with AI art generators. Often, simply adding the keyword ‘fantasy’ will result in images that remind you of magical tales that might include magicians and elves, set in medieval castles or beautiful ancient forests.
The prompts we used explored a few different themes including Nature, Medieval and Surreal. Each one included the keyword ‘fantasy’, plus some extra descriptions like ‘digital art’, ‘epic’, and ‘surreal’.
If you like the results, you can try using the outpainting feature in DALL-E to extend the image past its borders by generating new panels that blend with the existing image. Once you get the hang of these fantasy prompts, you can really let your imagination run wild!
Prompt: ‘Cottage overgrown with ancient trees, high-fantasy, digital art’.
Prompt: ‘Medieval German castle, surrounded by mountains, high fantasy, epic, digital art’.
Prompt: ‘Snail house on top of a cliff, surreal, fantasy, digital art’.
Trying New AI Prompts
The art prompts above are just a few examples to help you get started creating art with AI image generators. After trying out a few prompts, you can experiment with the descriptions by replacing keywords or subjects with ideas of your own. Before long, you will build a bank of words, phrases, and ideas to help you create stunning and original AI art.
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