Time is Not Always Money

November 26

6 min. to read

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Alex Tsepko, CEO, discusses why giving creators more time, away from gadgets and screens, is one of Skylum’s highest aspirations for Luminar AI.

Time flies. It never stops. In this busy modern era, we too often forget that we need to find time to invest in ourselves and our businesses..

At Skylum, we believe all technology should serve a meaningful purpose — ideally, even a noble one. By rebuilding Luminar to fully embrace the power of artificial intelligence, we solve several important time-related problems for photographers at once:

  1. When editing photos, we spend so much of our time in repetitive, technical work; selecting the parts of an image we want to adjust then directing the software to make those changes. Because of the boring nature of this work, people come to think of photo editing as difficult and not especially satisfying.


    In my experience, this grunt work makes up about 70% of the editing process; leaving only 30% for actual creativity. We believe AI can automate much of it and free people to invest time in their personal lives or in further developing their creativity.

  2. When a professional opens a photo for editing, they can usually picture the end result. This is not always the case with amateur or hobbyist photographers.


    Lacking the everyday experience of the professional, amateurs and hobbyists start clicking buttons and dragging sliders hoping to find their way to a great result. Too often, they fail. Looking at this problem, we wondered if AI might guide amateurs and hobbyists towards finding and developing their own style.

It’s important to understand that AI does not replace human creativity. In fact, human creativity — in the form of images from talented professional photographers and retouchers — trains our AI to understand what a good image is and then guides users through a series of options to quickly achieve professional results.

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LuminarAI presents creators with an immediate source of inspiration so they don’t find themselves stuck when experience is lacking or, in the case of professionals, when the ideas just aren’t flowing.

At times, photographers need to create a new reality — for example, by adding a fog effect or a more dramatic sky — to realize their vision. Again, this can be difficult in classic editors, as it requires extensive training and a lot of monotonous work. Within LuminarAI, artificial intelligence allows photographers to make these sorts of dramatic changes quickly and simply.

Giving people such creative freedom is like giving them superpowers. That’s our vision of the intersection of artificial intelligence and creativity.

LuminarAI is like a collective mind: it takes insights from brilliant artists, retouchers, designers, and other creative geniuses and uses them to intelligently guide users through the editing process.

We also understand the limitations of AI. One thing it certainly cannot do is replace the creator, their creativity, or their personal style. All these things are intimately related to who the creator is as a person and how they sees the world.

If you look at any recent update to a traditional photo editor, you’ll see it doesn’t really change the editing process. Rather, it adds a bunch of buttons and sliders. This approach doesn’t value your time; it doesn’t free you to live your life. Instead, it creates more work, forcing you to live too much of your life at the editing desk.

We think differently. We want creators to live lives outside the photo editor and still be able to make cool photos. In our vision for the future, creators don’t waste time on routine work; they don’t waste time on a single unnecessary step like copying and pasting.

Instead, they use smart technologies to speed up the process of creating the images they need to tell their stories to the world via print, social media, or anything in between.

It’s a simple principle: Whether you’re a professional or amateur photographer, we want your photography to be driven by your unique creative vision, not monotonous grunt work.

Your time is precious. Forget about routine, redundant, and unnecessary processes.

Focus on the genius part of each photo, the creative part, the part only you bring to the table.

That's our goal at Skylum.

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Written by

Alex Tsepko

CEO van Skylum

Alex is de CEO van Skylum, gepassioneerd fotograaf, AI-fanboy, een familieman en LEGO-bouwer. Alex leert van het dagelijks leven en laat zich inspireren door mensen die hij ontmoet tijdens zijn reizen over de hele wereld. Samen met 130 ongelooflijk getalenteerde mensen bouwt Alex aan Skylum - een wereldwijd toekomstgericht fotografiebedrijf voor een nieuwe generatie. En ze hebben de tijd van hun leven!

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