The AI Art Competition Beginneth!

Inspired by the incredible work I saw from @blockheim here, I am launching an AI art competition!

The prizes: three winners will get $2,000 USD each. I’ve been going deep on AI-generated art, my mind is blown, and I want to feed the creative fire.

No purchase of any kind is required. Here are the deadlines and rules…

  1. Deadline for submission is 10 p.m. ET, Tuesday, Dec 20th, 2022. The competition starts now.
  2. No purchase is necessary. Mentioning this twice so people get it.
  3. You can use any AI tools or combination of tools that you like, including DALL·E 2 (@OpenAI), Midjourney (@midjourney), Stable Diffusion (@StableDiffusion), Lexica (@LexicaArt,) NightCafe Studio (@NightcafeStudio), etc. You are also allowed to do manual touch-ups and fine-tuning. IMPORTANT: You *must* use Loom (@loom) or other tech to capture your full process.
  4. The artwork must include at least one COCKPUNCH™ character and specific properties/traits from that character. To avoid intellectual property headaches, it must be based on either (a) COCKPUNCH NFTs that you personally own, or (b) some COCKPUNCH NFTs I own, and you can include one, many, or anything in between.

    Below are the token IDs of mine that you can use for this competition, and each linked page includes “properties”:

Wizard345, 436
Berserker289, 336
Cleric367, 343
High Elf171, 237
Forest Elf487, 176, 40
Master of Blades493, 100
Shaman133, 144
Pirate259, 115

If you’d like higher-res images, as well as preserved aspect ratio, you can use

  1. To submit your final art, you must follow @cockpunch on Twitter, post your image(s) on Twitter with tag @cockpunch and #AI, and you must include a link to your process video or blog post, including prompts used, etc. 
  2. After the deadline, my magic elves will choose winners within a week, and we’ll announce them on Twitter! Selections will be based on quality, creativity, presentation of process, and more. Process is important. People should at least be able to *attempt* to replicate what you did. We will also retweet some of our favorite “honorable mentions” to highlight cool work.
  3. The winners will receive their $2K USD via wire transfer. Terms: void where prohibited, must be at least 18 years of age, you are responsible for any and all taxes, no minotaurs allowed, etc. If you include your own COCKPUNCH NFT(s) in your art, we will need to authenticate that you are the owner before awarding any prizes.
  4. Last but not least, you will get bonus credit for multiple submissions and early submissions, so don’t wait until the last minute. Two 8-0ut-of-10 submissions will beat one 9-out-of-10 submission.

    And…. I think that’s it for now! I’m very excited to see what sublime and ridiculous art emerges!

    Best of luck to everyone, and sending warmest wishes to you and yours,


[Update: The winners have been announced.]

The Tim Ferriss Show is one of the most popular podcasts in the world with more than 900 million downloads. It has been selected for "Best of Apple Podcasts" three times, it is often the #1 interview podcast across all of Apple Podcasts, and it's been ranked #1 out of 400,000+ podcasts on many occasions. To listen to any of the past episodes for free, check out this page.

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13 Replies to “The AI Art Competition Beginneth!”

  1. I’m disappointed that Tim would throw more fuel on the AI-art fire. Yes, it’s very cool and will reduce barriers to entry, however, it’s hard to imagine this won’t ultimately increase homogeneity. Are we sure we want to make it even harder to be an artist?

    1. Harder?? How does opening the door to anyone and everyone make it “harder to be an artist”. Harder to make a living at it maybe, but let’s be honest. If making money is your priority, “artist” was already a poor career choice…

      1. What a ridiculous thing to say. Artists don’t want to “make money” in the sense of “getting rich” through art. They do however want to live/survive like the rest of us. That is enough for them, and you’d leave them jobless for no reason at all. This plagiarism tool does not advance humanity or the art medium even. It’s an evil farce.

      2. backcountry164 – EVERY professional artist’s priority is to make money, as we have kids, mortgage, pets etc. just like everybody else. Second priority is being creative and honing a craft we love.
        AI art is making it SIGNIFICANTLY harder to find work as an artist, as lower-tier work is already now being replaced by AI image generators. Album covers, book covers, private commissions etc. is what most artists start out doing before they get good enough to be hired by a studio or get high-end clients.
        With the quality increase we see right now, it is only a matter of time before mid-tier work is gone too.
        Furthermore, there are already cases of huge, very respected artists getting completely copied by image generators – the AI even adds the signature in some cases(!) – and amateurs are trolling them, pretending to be them, getting involved in nsfw and behaviour which hurt the original artists’ image.
        AI image generators were trained by scraping millions of copyrighted works, without consent and without payment, so everything the AI generator creates is based on existing artworks.
        So first the artists have their work stolen and now the thieves are putting the original artists out of work. It’s a double whammy which cant be defended.

      3. “Artist was already poor career choice”… only a short mind and miss-informed person could keep using cliches like this form last century. Good luck with your critical thinking.

        Going back to the AI topic. This is a new fascinating tech that will open so much more possibilities and will be use by artist then selves as a new tool. But that said, you can’t neglect the lack of laws protecting the artist that these ai fees from atm (copyrights like in the ai music industry for example) that is harming the artist community.

      1. Congratulations on your meaningless platitude. Change for the sake of change is not good. This subject is complex, it can’t be cast aside with a simple platitude

    2. Maybe the AI should be viewed as a new style artists should adopt instead of fight. The words used are the new paint or photoshop tool,the AI is the canvas that helps you capture it.

    3. Me too. I am extremely disappointed Tim Ferris promotes AI art. It is DESTROYING artists’ livelihoods! Why bother spending a decade mastering the craft, when every client can just get the art they want for free by typing in a prompt?
      Some famous artists are getting plagiarized so well, trolls are imitating their designs and stealing their identity. Many artists have already lost revenue because bands and authors use AI generators for their book and album covers.
      AI art is THEFT! The algorithms are trained on millions of copyrighted artworks without the artists’ consent.
      If you indulge in AI art, even as a user, you are condoning art theft, helping destroy the art space and disrespecting artists from all over the world.

  2. Re: Tech shortcuts I’m using daily
    To paste without any formatting, use Command + Shift + V (Windows: Ctrl + Shift + V) instead of Command+V (Windows: Ctrl + V). Saves the step of highlighting + clicking “remove formatting”!

  3. I don’t think anybody, including you Tim understand how massive cockpunch is going to be. Excited to be a small part of it!

  4. I don’t like using Twitter, so I’m going to comment here, where I hope Tim reads this.

    I have to say, I am supremely disappointed in this move, mostly because it seems very ill-conceived and tone-deaf to the art community in general. I want to start out by saying that I have tried some of these programs. As an artist myself, it felt fun and I definitely got a good sugar rush out of it, but when I learned the ethical implications, I immediately backed off. Copyrighted artwork and imagery are in these datasets that are being used by these AI companies without assent and for profit. This alone is highly unethical and the basis for why many artists in the community are taking a stand against AI-generated artwork, myself included.

    I hope I am speaking to your curious nature, Tim, of which attracted me to your work to begin with, and that you’ll at least research this topic further before going through on sending money to people who use these unethical AI programs that undermine the livelihoods of the artists who’ve unwillingly been fed to this machine.

    Thank you for your time.

    Places to start (not sure if I can post links, so just posting the titles):

    – MIT Technology Review – “This artist is dominating AI-generated art. And he’s not happy about it. Greg Rutkowski is a more popular prompt than Picasso.” by Melissa Heikkilä

    – Tech Crunch – “Image-generating AI can copy and paste from training data, raising IP concerns” by Kyle Wiggers

    – Vice – “ISIS Executions and Non-Consensual Porn Are Powering AI Art” by Chloe Xiang and Emanuel Maiberg

    – (Youtube) Steven Zapata – “The End of Art: An Argument Against Image AIs”

    – Art Cafe Podcast #134