It only takes a few minutes to appreciate a good painting, but any good piece of art demands plenty of man-hours — and maybe some tears along the way. That’s the case when people are behind the paintbrush, at least; it’s a different story when machines are involved. Technology strikes again, because now a computer algorithm can recreate the style of the world’s most famous painters.
German researchers managed to put together a system to effectively copy the styles of artists like Picasso and Van Gogh; moreover, they take regular photos and reimagine them in said styles in an hour’s time. Granted the photo’s content needs to be suitable enough for the reimagining to work, but at the very least progress has been made. The algorithm is based on deep neural networks, and in doing so taps into the same sort of mental processes that lets a talented artist come up with dazzling creations. Put simply, an algorithm that can match the complex processes of the human brain may lead to advances in understanding the human brain.
Failing that, it can still make some good-looking pictures. Maybe one day soon, the average computer will be the next great artist.