Last year an AI-generated picture won an art competition. The technology has of course only got better in the time since then. So inevitably an AI generated image has now won a photography competition, even though of course no photography was involved. Well, other than the no doubt huge number of photos the AI ingested as part of its training.

Photographer Boris Eldagsen won a prize at the Sony World Photography Awards with this entry:

He titled it “PSEUDOMNESIA | The Electrician”, the first part of which is a reference to a condition associated with pathological lying.

Mr Eldagsen is on board with the idea that AI generated images are not photography as such and hence is declining to actually take the award and associated prize. It seems he was more in it to generate some kind of discussion about how “co-working” with AI fits into the world of photography. After all, it’s been a long time since the rules of many photography competitions forbade the use of computers and digital modification entirely. And as it stands, there’s no reason to suppose that a more nefarious actor couldn’t win a competition with the help of AI image generation in the future without feeling inclined to reveal the true source of their image.