San Diego Comic-Con Artist Alley Removed A.I. Exhibitor? Not So Fast


Posted in: Comics, Conventions, Current News, san diego comic con | Tagged: artists alley, sdcc

One story that spilled out of San Diego Comic-Con was that an exhibitor at Artists Alley was asked to leave over selling AI images. But was it true?

One story that spilled out of San Diego Comic-Con last week is that an exhibitor at Artists Alley was asked by the show to pack up and leave, after it was reported that they were selling A.I. images rather than hand-created art.

Comic book creator Jon Lam posted on Twitter over the weekend,“There’s non-disclosed Ai art being sold in SDCC Artist Alley @Comic_Con. It’s hard to keep track, but given that Ai is a key point for the @WGAWest and @sagaftra strike while devastating the Art community Artist Alley will need higher scrutiny. A telltale sign is if someone’s art is at a certain level in their history, and then all of a sudden, within several months all of their work looks like Nijii Journey. Selling GenAi is wrong as the data doesn’t belong to you, and not disclosing is even more scabby.”

He then added an update later on, saying “Update, the Artist has been booted. SDCC artist alley is made for Artists trying to do business from handmade original art. SDCC also had members from SAG and WGA speaking out against corps using Ai to steal their voices. Using stolen data for Artist Valor is Scab behaviour. taking a stance and supporting Artists, and the WGA/SAG strike.”

Screencap from From One Side Of SDCC 2023 To The Other

This year has seen Artificial Intelligence artwork (dubbed by some as Plagiarism Software) become more prominent, with comics artists like Brian Holguin, Dave McKean and Ryan Hughes prominently embracing it, but there have been many others condemning its use across the industry.

And though Jon Lam didn’t name the creator in question, he left enough photographic clues of the empty table, for the internet to work out that it was artist who goes by the name of Art By Sherilyn at Booth CC 04 , a regular SDCC Artists Alley exhibitor.

However, I talked to San Diego Comic-Con management, and they were bemused by the story being spread. They had no knowledge of anyone being removed from the show for that basis. Not this year, anyway. I understand that no one from SDCC made any such accusation and that Sherilyn left the show late on Saturday of her own volition because of health issues – and that’s all. She has yet to make any kind of statement, but I understand that she vehemently denies using AI in her artwork at all and, moving forward, is willing to post work-in-progress images and video to counteract any further accusations. It turns out that being locked down for a long period of time gives some people the opportunity to improve their art, some of which went on display for the first time at San Diego. And as a result of being tracked down by folks on Reddit, 4Chan and the like, and receiving hate messages, she has had to close down her social media. The idea of cyberbullying someone over such an accusation is horrible, and I think we should all agree is beyond the pale.

It may be that artificial intelligence is making us all a little paranoid right now.

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