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Asian Paints Draws on Generative AI for ColourNext 2024

  • Colours
Feb 21, 2024
AI-generated space images - Beautifull Homes

Product and industrial designer Aditi Kedia, who was part of the ColourNext trends forecasting panel, on deftly wielding AI tools to generate images that perfectly showcased the four trends

AI’s here to stay and the best way to deal with its omnipresence is to embrace it. Like Asian Paints did. The brand got into the tech groove wholeheartedly for this ColourNext edition, with AI-generated images illustrating the four trends. Leading the design charge was product and industrial designer Aditi Kedia. This Pratt Institute graduate accumulated work experience in New York and Kathmandu before heading back to India to set up her studio, Thought and Found in New Delhi. Kedia’s curiosity about integrating tech precision with human creativity couldn’t have found a better outlet than future-forward ColourNext. She talks about how she and her team leveraged AI to build an image bank of the trends for 2024.

Beautiful Homes (BH): How did you get interested in integrating technology into the creative process?

Aditi Kedia (AK): I’ve always been fascinated by technology’s potential to enhance design processes, not just for image generation but as a new dimension to my design thinking. I first explored AI tools in July 2022, when its ability to generate clear images was still in its infancy. Yet, the rapid advancements in the technology over have been phenomenal. I used AI on a large scale for the first time with ColourNext 2024.

Soil – Beautiful Homes

The trend Soil is about turning to nature and simpler materials and rediscovering their importance.

Colour of the Year inspirational images – Beautifull Homes

AI-generated image illustrating the Colour of the Year ‘Terra’.

BH: What were the parameters of using AI for ColourNext?

AK: My role at ColourNext went beyond traditional design; I was also part of the material forecasting team. Trend forecasting often requires going beyond existing references, so we began experimenting with AI during the ideation phase. The AI tools became invaluable in this process, helping us materialise our vision and the aesthetic, and communicate it effectively. This AI-integrated approach also allowed me to explore its potential in design and styling. 

BH: How did you go about generating images using AI?

AK: We used a combination of different AI technologies, including Midjourney. The process involved carefully crafting prompts based on the trend keywords we had identified. We started by pinning down the story and aesthetic we wanted to convey, using colour schemes and material mood boards as our foundation. AI then became the tool to express what we had in mind, allowing us to bring our ideas to life in a way that was both precise and imaginative.
 

BH: Did you get the result needed on the first attempt? Was there a trend that was harder to generate images for over others?

AK: The path to the final images was far from straightforward—it involved hundreds of iterations. We were constantly refining the prompts and experimenting with AI to achieve the exact visualisation we wanted. It was an extremely intensive process, and a testament to the power of persistence and conviction in AI’s potential as a tool for creative exploration. As far as trends go, pinning down the aesthetic for Indofuturism was the toughest, as there were a lot of details we were dealing with.

Indofuturism – Beautiful Homes

The trend Indofuturism is about embracing the past and leveraging tech to realign the future of India-focused design.

BH: Do you think a background in design is necessary to get the best out of AI? 

AK: My design background allowed me to use AI not just as a tool for generating ideas, but as a collaborative partner in executing my vision. I think this synergy between design sensibility and AI technology sets apart the use of AI in creative processes, allowing for an outcome that is both innovative and deeply rooted in design principles. It has underscored my belief in AI as a complementary tool for designers to visualise and refine our ideas in unprecedented ways.

Colour of the Year, Terra – Beautifull Homes
These images illustrate the use of the Colour of the Year ‘Terra’ in different spaces.
AI-generated space images - Beautifull Homes
Inspirational AI images generated by product and industrial designer Aditi Kedia.
Colour of the Year, Terra space images – Beautifull Homes
The process involved carefully crafting prompts based on the keywords.

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