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Editor's Note

AI is Already Changing Our Profession. Let’s Open the Debate on Whether That’s a Good Thing.

In this issue, two experts weigh the pros and cons of image generation technology.




IT TOOK ME A LONG time to not be mad at AI. And, admittedly, I was uninformed. I was still reeling from the past decades of the social media explosion where everyone became an expert on everything. “Citizen journalism” took over and all you need is a keyboard and an opinion — true or not — to become the end-all keeper of knowledge on any topic imaginable. It cheapens my nearly 40-year career as a professional business-to-business journalist, where research, fact finding, and unbiased education are vitally important.

So when AI came along and was the new magic tool for writing kids’ school papers and new graduates’ resumés, I braced myself for yet another blow to the world of writing and educating through words. And now it is hitting the design world in image generation. There’s two sides to this: As professional artists, do you stick with the tried and true methods, or adopt this burgeoning technology? Or, do you do a mixture of both?

To open what I know will be a controversial-but-needed discussion, we challenged two long-time Screen Printing columnists to a Point/Counterpoint head-to-head on the pros and cons of AI for image generation. Marshall Atkinson promotes the use of AI through Midjourney and interviews veteran screen print designers who have adopted the technology and are finding successes. While Andy MacDougall counters with an interview and his podcast with world-renowned artist Jeral Tidwell, who still does impeccable work by hand and both are believers that AI and the plagiarism aspect of it is dangerous territory.

It’s fascinating to hear their views and I see the benefits of both. So my own jury’s still out and I’m eager to learn more. As the industry’s leading publication, I feel it’s our responsibility to open the conversation, no matter how controversial it might get. As we all embark on this new-world experience together, let’s talk. I want to hear your thoughts:

AI is Already Changing Our Profession. Let’s Open the Debate on Whether That’s a Good Thing.




Let’s Talk About It

Creating a More Diverse and Inclusive Screen Printing Industry

LET’S TALK About It: Part 3 discusses how four screen printers have employed people with disabilities, why you should consider doing the same, the resources that are available, and more. Watch the live webinar, held August 16, moderated by Adrienne Palmer, editor-in-chief, Screen Printing magazine, with panelists Ali Banholzer, Amber Massey, Ryan Moor, and Jed Seifert. The multi-part series is hosted exclusively by ROQ.US and U.N.I.T.E Together. Let’s Talk About It: Part 1 focused on Black, female screen printers and can be watched here; Part 2 focused on the LGBTQ+ community and can be watched here.

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