Stable Diffusion stands out as an exceptionally versatile AI image generator. Notably, it is entirely open source, allowing users to train their own models based on custom datasets, tailoring the generated images to their specific preferences.
Embracing AI-generated art in your daily work can really change your life. Let’s explore Stable Diffusion AI in more detail.
What is Stable Diffusion AI?
Stable Diffusion AI offers an array of avenues through which you can make the most of its capabilities. You can opt to download and run it on your personal computer, set up a customized model using Leap AI, or access the API via platforms like NightCafe.
Stable Diffusion is an advanced AI image generator specifically designed to create images based on text prompts. By providing descriptive text inputs like style, frame, or presets, Stable Diffusion can generate visually appealing images. Additionally, it offers features such as inpainting, which allows for adding or replacing image elements, and outpainting, which extends the size of an image.
Whether working with AI-generated or uploaded images, Stable Diffusion provides the flexibility to edit and refine the visuals.
What is Generative AI?
Generative AI refers to the use of machine learning techniques to generate new content based on existing data. It enables users to create various types of content such as text, images, videos, and synthetic data.
Unlike supervised learning, where models are trained using labeled data, generative AI utilizes unlabeled data to identify patterns and structures without explicit guidance or feedback. This approach offers the ability to produce high-quality work in a significantly shorter time frame compared to human creation, making it a valuable tool for creators.
Being an open-source platform like OpenAI, Stable Diffusion is freely accessible for anyone to use. Users can utilize Stable Diffusion through an API on their local machine or via online software programs like DreamStudio, WriteSonic, and others.
Signing up for Stable Diffusion
To begin your journey with Stable Diffusion, follow these steps to register for DreamStudio:
- Visit https://dreamstudio.ai/generate
- Close any pop-up notifications about new features and, if prompted, agree to the terms of service.
- Click on “Login” located in the top-right corner, then proceed to create a new account.
- Log in to DreamStudio, the web app used to access Stable Diffusion.
Upon signing up, you will be granted 25 free credits, allowing you to experiment with seven different prompts and generate approximately 30 images using the default settings. If you require additional credits, they are available at a reasonable price, with $10 granting you 1,000 credits.
In the event that you exhaust your credits, you can also explore the option of running Stable Diffusion on your computer for free.
Generating Images with Stable Diffusion
Let’s embark on generating your first image. Within the left sidebar of DreamStudio, you will find all the necessary controls. While Stable Diffusion offers more options compared to DALL·E 2, we’ll start with a simple approach.
The Style dropdown menu enables you to select a specific image style for Stable Diffusion to generate. The available options encompass a broad range, including Enhance (the default), Anime, Photographic, Digital Art, Comic Book, Fantasy Art, Analog Film, Neon Punk, Isometric, Low Poly, Origami, Line Art, Craft Clay, Cinematic, 3D Model, and Pixel Art. Feel free to explore and choose the style that catches your eye.
The most crucial element is the Prompt box. Here, you describe what you want Stable Diffusion to create. The box always offers a random suggestion to inspire you (and you can cycle through more suggestions), but it’s advisable to enter your specific prompt. Here are a few enjoyable prompts to consider:
- “A surreal underwater world with vibrant coral reefs and bioluminescent creatures.”
- “A bustling marketplace in a bustling city, filled with people from different cultures.”
- “A steampunk-inspired train traveling through a vast desert.”
Once you have entered your prompt, you can ignore the other options for now and click on “Dream.”
You will notice numbers on the button indicating the number of credits required to generate the artwork with your chosen settings. By default, it will consume 3.33 credits.
Wait for a few moments while DreamStudio processes your request. Subsequently, you will be presented with four options to choose from. Select your preferred image and utilize the buttons located at the top of the right sidebar to download it (and optionally upscale the resolution), reuse the prompt, generate additional variations, edit it, or set it as the initial image, which incorporates it into the prompt.
Enhancing your Image
While the Style options in Stable Diffusion offer some control over the generated images, the majority of the creative power lies within the prompts. DreamStudio provides a few options to refine your results.
Focus on the prompt
The Prompt box remains the most influential aspect. To maximize its potential, provide a detailed description of the desired image. However, bear a few considerations in mind:
- Specificity yields better results: If you want a camel, be explicit and mention “camel” instead of a general term like “animal.”
- Avoid overly complex prompts: Including excessive details can lead to confusion. Furthermore, current art generators may struggle with understanding specific quantities, sizes, and colors.
- Pay attention to details: You can add descriptors for the subject, medium, environment, lighting, color, mood, composition, and more.
Utilize negative prompts
The Negative prompt box allows you to specify elements you want to exclude from your image. Although not always entirely effective, it can help steer the generated images in certain directions.
For instance, in the provided image, the negative prompt includes “sand, camel, oasis, travelers” While some backgrounds may still contain these elements, they are less prominent in the four generated images compared to using the prompt “A steampunk-inspired train traveling through a vast desert.”
Incorporating images into the prompt
The Image box permits you to upload an image to influence the composition, color, and other aspects of the generated image. This feature empowers you with significant control. After uploading an image, you can adjust the extent to which it impacts the generated art. The default strength is 35%, but feel free to experiment with different values.
Images of zombies running through the woods: The top row exhibits a resemblance to the uploaded image, while the bottom row showcases a more stylized interpretation.
In the provided images, the prompt “a zombie running through the woods” is combined with a photograph of the author running through the woods. The bottom options feature an image strength set to 35%, while the top options employ a setting of 70%. In both cases, the influence of the base image on the overall appearance of the generated images is evident.
Exploring additional Stable Diffusion settings
Stable Diffusion offers several more settings for you to experiment with, although they affect the number of credits consumed per generation. Let’s examine the two fundamental settings:
- Aspect ratio: The default is 1:1, but you have the option to select 7:4, 3:2, 4:3, 5:4, 4:5, 3:4, 2:3, and 7:4 for a wider image.
- Image count: You can generate between one and ten images per prompt.
Under the “Advanced” section, four additional options are available:
- Prompt strength: This parameter determines the weight of your prompt during the image generation process. It can be set between 1 and 30, with the default value around 15. In the provided image, the prompt strength is set to 1 (top) and 30 (bottom).
- Generation steps: This setting determines the number of diffusion steps the model takes. Generally, a higher number yields better results, although the improvements become less significant with each additional step.
- Seed: You can choose a random seed number between 1 and 4,294, 967,295. Consistently using the same seed with the same settings will result in similar outputs.
- Model: Stable Diffusion offers three different versions to choose from: 2.1, 2.1-768, and a preview of SDXL (the default).
While you may not need to delve into these settings frequently, they provide valuable insights into Stable Diffusion’s inner workings when working with prompts.
Editing Options in Stable Diffusion AI
Stable Diffusion’s DreamStudio also supports inpainting and outpainting, enabling you to modify image details or expand images beyond their original borders using an AI art generator. To perform inpainting or outpainting:
- Select the “Edit” option at the top of the left sidebar.
- Create a new image or import one from your computer.
- Use the arrow tool to select an overlapping area, enter a prompt, and click “Dream.” Four potential options for expanding your canvas will be provided.
- Alternatively, use the eraser tool to remove elements from an image and replace them using a prompt.
To be transparent, DreamStudio’s inpainting and outpainting tools may appear less seamless compared to those in DALL·E 2. The blending of new AI generations may not be as refined. Nonetheless, it’s an enjoyable feature to explore and provides a glimpse into the potential commercial applications of AI image generators in the coming years.
While DreamStudio offers the quickest entry point to Stable Diffusion, it is by no means the only option available. If you find it intriguing, consider delving deeper into the possibilities by training your own models or installing Stable Diffusion on your computer to generate images freely.
Stable Diffusion continues to advance, but if you desire a different experience, be sure to explore DALL·E 2 and Midjourney, the other prominent AI image generators.
Stable Diffusion AI represents a groundbreaking technology that is transforming the creative process for artists. By leveraging descriptive text prompts, users can generate remarkable images of exceptional quality and further customize them to align with their artistic vision.
The adoption of Stable Diffusion, alongside other generative AI platforms like Midjourney and DragGAN AI, has gained immense popularity among digital artists seeking innovative approaches to their craft. As generative AI continues to evolve, it is crucial to employ it responsibly and ethically, recognizing that AI is intended to assist rather than replace human creativity.
If you’re interested in delving deeper into the realm of generative AI and the tools used to unleash its potential, we invite you to explore our other related posts that delve into the exciting world of AI.