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Amplify your content production with text-to-image AI

by Todd Terwillegar  |  October 11, 2023

7 min. read
Image of 3 fake forest houses from generative AI Adobe Firefly.

Are you curious about text-to-image AI, the best generative AI tools, and how to apply AI art to your marketing programs?

You’re in the right place.

Text-to-image AI technology is making headlines everywhere. And it has the potential to amplify your marketing engine if you know how to scale AI content use.

Generative AI tools have created more images than the amount of photography generated in the previous 150 years, or approximately 15 and a half billion images as of August 2023.

That’s a lot of content.

According to Forbes, it’s creating new jobs, automating existing ones, and helping people become more productive.

How will you effectively manage, apply, and distribute all this new content at scale?

Buckle up and find out how to harness the full power of generative AI for your teams.

What is text-to-image AI?

Text-to-image AI (generative AI) is an emerging technology that instantly generates original art. Users enter a text prompt to give the AI tool direction for their desired art. Text-to-image AI is useful for generating fresh art concepts and increasing productivity for creatives and marketers.

Images of 3 ants generated via AI using a prompt.
Images generated using Adobe Firefly.

What are the benefits of using generative AI?

Generative AI is still in its infancy but can help speed up the creative process for creatives and marketing teams willing to try it. And it’s not going to replace your job! All it takes is a bit of prompting practice.

Text-to-image AI has the potential to help with:

  • Co-creating original art quickly: Instead of creating designs from scratch, you can use AI to build the base layer of your design faster than from scratch
  • Trying out new concepts faster: Instead of spending a few hours trying out a new idea that may or may not work, generative AI allows you to try out concepts immediately for feasibility in your art projects
  • Creating similar versions of art: Use generative AI to see inspiring variations on the same work instantly
  • Providing an out-of-the-box approach to campaigns: Collaborate with others across your teams in real-time on concepts to nail down the next campaign direction quickly

With some practice on prompting or help from one of many prompt engineering guides, you’ll be productively using text-to-image AI in no time.

What are the best paid text-to-image AI tools?

Ready to get started with the best paid text-to-image AI tool? Although there are many free generative AI tools, I recommend using a paid tool to get the best quality images and the best potential to streamline your creative workflows.

Here are the best paid options to try out:


DALL-E, DALL-E 2, and the upcoming DALL-E 3 are generative AI technologies from the team at OpenAI. DALL-E 2 can create surreal art quickly and easily but can lack the realism of other generative AI services. It also doesn’t have some output features that other platforms like Adobe now have, and you will need to practice prompting to get the desired result.

What DALL-E 2 can currently do:

  • Generate images: Enter a text prompt with visual direction to generate four samples of art

DALL-E 2 can also create variations or edit transparent sections of existing art. Just be aware it only natively handles 1:1 ratio output for now.


Midjourney is a generative art service accessed using a Discord server. It’s popular (over 15 million members as of October 2023) and can generate stunning art quickly. It’s also the only service I used that renders previews of the art. The end art quality overall was fairly realistic but sometimes lacked context from the prompt.

What Midjourney can currently do:

  • Generate images: Generate four stunning sample images using the /imagine command prompt

The best thing about this service is the engaged community behind it. I could sense the excitement of active users trying out various commands to get the desired art. There were also plenty of engaging channels to get inspiration on Discord.

Get started with this useful guide.

Adobe Firefly

Adobe is a global leader in cutting-edge design and video cloud software, and its generative AI, known as Firefly, is no exception. Adobe created a suite of AI tools that amplify the creative prowess of designers and improve creative workflows through integrations in their software suite. Firefly was trained on Adobe Stock image and public content.

What Firefly can currently do:

  • Text to image: Generate four stunning sample images using only a text prompt
  • Generative fill: Remove or add objects to existing art
  • Text effects: Make original and styled typography with a text prompt
  • Generative recolor: Recolor existing art quickly
Image of a modern woman on a street, and another image with generated fill around her expanding the city surrounding her.
Generative fill using Adobe Firefly.
3 images of an amusement park generated in different colors using Adobe Firefly image recolor.
Images generated with generative recolor using Adobe Firefly.

Adobe Firefly is the best choice for those looking to improve existing creative workflows, amplify design creativity without legal worries, and easily try AI without leaving the Adobe ecosystem. Firefly also can output higher-resolution images than other tools. You will need an Adobe CC subscription to access Firefly.

Get started with this in-depth guide.

Scale your creative workflows with generative AI

Your team is now powered to produce more content, collaborate on better ideas, and even streamline creative operations…but there’s a catch. As you create more content, your existing content production workflows need to keep up with the influx of content you are producing, including:

  • Placing content in the correct storage and structure
  • Capturing incoming content metadata accurately, especially around licensing and usage
  • Setting content permissions to the right teams
  • Sharing content effectively to the proper channels and platforms

Due to generative AI, there is a gap between the amount of content coming in and the amount of content your creative team can realistically manage.

That’s not hyperbole; it’s the state of digital content. It’s called content chaos.

There’s a gap in scaling storage, organization, discoverability, and sharing of generative AI content. And that gap will only widen quickly without the right tools in place.

Image of a cat wearing a hat and shirt and sunglasses and eating a cheeseburger surrounded by Canto UI elements over an orange background.
Center image generated using Adobe Firefly.

Manage your growing content library with digital asset management

Digital asset management (DAM) software centralizes your content so that it’s easier to organize, find, and share your content at scale. DAM platforms are for brands like yours looking to scale their library quickly.

DAMs are much more than a replacement for your cloud or on-premises storage. DAM software includes features that cloud storage can’t provide and solves generative AI content chaos.

Here are a few key DAM features:

  • Powerful search: Find content faster by searching your content and attached metadata
  • Automatic tagging: Stop wasting time trying to tag assets manually during ingestion. Instead, rely on object identification technology to find and tag your images and videos
  • Text and face detection: Find copy and people inside of images quickly
  • DRM and controls: Set which teams can access and use your content
  • Easy sharing: Connect your sharing tools directly to your content library for better creative workflows

Don’t let up on the gas due to content chaos created by generative AI. Embrace the potential to scale your content programs using text-to-image AI tools and DAM as part of your toolkit.

The benefits of using text-to-image AI and DAM

When you manage your generative AI content and brand assets in a DAM platform, your teams can work faster and achieve more.

You gain the following benefits with DAM:

  • Increase in productivity: Spend less time organizing and searching and more time creating, finding, and sharing new content with teams
  • Go to market faster: Enable your teams to find content with rights on-demand and move it to market at scale
  • Maximize your content ROI: Find and reuse content in new designs or campaigns, skyrocketing content value and extending the content lifecycle
  • Strengthen your brand: Since your teams are all using the same playbook and library, your message and content hit the market on-brand every time

Canto is the leader in digital asset management

Catch the wave of possibilities generative AI brings with the power of Canto’s digital asset management platform. Top brands across the globe trust Canto to centralize, organize, find, and share their content.

Canto includes all the technologies you need to scale your content workflows and meet the surge of text-to-image AI content. With Canto AI Visual Search, use natural language to instantly find and access your library’s most relevant content, including generative AI images.

Book a demo today and see the power of Canto at your fingertips.