Real Use Cases for Generative AI in Motorsports

AI programs such as Midjourney and Dall-e 2 are changing the way designers creative visually, giving rise to new use cases in motorsports
Samuel Pawlak
Owner of Grand Prix Studio
October 13, 2022

I’ve spent the last few days playing around in Mid Journey, an AI powered image generation tool. Simply put, this tool is just unreal. But should designers like myself fear for their job? …not quite yet.

What is Midjourney?

Simply put, Midjourney is an AI software that creates images from scratch based solely on prompts you give it. For example, the images below were created in seconds after telling the AI I wanted “Brad Binder, Rider, standing”. That’s it. For those who don’t follow Moto GP, Brad Binder is one of the Red Bull KTM riders.

Generative group of images of Midjourney's interpretation of MotoGP Rider Brad Binder

I was purposefully a bit vague in the prompt because I was genuinely curious what the AI would come up with. I then experimented further with the prompts to create some abstract action scenes of Binder leaning through a corner.

Generative group of images of Midjourney's interpretation of MotoGP Rider Brad Binder on his KTM leaning into a corner

What Midjourney and generative AI is incredible at

Right now, Midjourney isn’t truly capable of producing what I would deme to be a final product, a final render, or final image. Unless of course abstract is what you’re shooting for. But if you want photorealistic pixel perfect images, Midjourney might get you 60% of the way there with some iterating, but you’ll need to leverage Photoshop to get the other 40% (not a quick job).

Midjourney interpretation of a race track

Really though, trying to create photorealistic content isn’t really what you want to be using this for. This tool is great at pulling ideas out of thin air via simple human readable prompts. And that’s about it for now.

Motorsports Use Cases for AI like Midjourney

As of today, Midjourney’s only use cases live on the marketing / creative side of motorsports. This would include things like story-boarding for videographers, creating concept livery mock-ups (like the helmets below), event poster design, or quickly spinning up new product concepts as a performance brand. I’ve said it in prior videos of mine, and it’s worth restating here. Never bet against tech. 99/100 times you will lose. I would not be surprised in the slightest if programs like Midjourney get to a point before the end of the decade where photo-realism (i.e. an AI image created from prompts that’s indistinguishable from a photo) will happen. And then the question becomes, what can’t you use such a tool for?

Midjourney interpretation of helmet designs

What you should be afraid of

Midjourney when used properly is an amazing tool, especially for people who work in the creative field. I certainly don’t feel it threatens my job as a designer yet. However, if you work in the copywriting / journalist business, I would be afraid. Because there’s a creative writing equivalent of Midjourney that might just write your next race recap/report for you. And that’s the topic of the next upcoming blog.

For those who are more technically inclined, tou can sign up for the Midjourney Beta here.