The best books take you to a whole other world through your imagination alone.
While your body is in bed, your mind may be wandering the manicured gardens of a country house or the gritty streets of Victorian London.
But now you can see some of the most iconic houses in literature with your own eyes, thanks to artificial intelligence (AI).
These include Pemberley House, Mr. Darcy’s opulent estate in ‘Pride and Prejudice’, and the residence of the world’s most famous detective, Sherlock Holmes.
Book lovers at Hammonds Furniture used text-to-image software Midjourney to bring fictional homes to life in celebration of World Book Day 2023 – but how many can you guess?
Jay Gatsby’s mansion in ‘The Great Gatsby’ (pictured) has been described as a ‘colossal affair by any measure’ and an ‘imitation of some Hôtel de Ville in Normandy’
Daisy Buchanan’s estate in “The Great Gatsby” (pictured) has been described as a “cheerful red-and-white Georgian colonial mansion,” as well as “expansive,” “bright,” and “rosy”
1. The Great Gatsby – F. Scott Fitzgerald
The above two houses are depictions of the one from ‘The Great Gatsby’, a 1922 novel that follows the life of the mysterious millionaire Jay Gatsby.
It is told through the eyes of Nick Carraway, a bond salesman who moves next door in the wealthy enclave of West Egg on Long Island.
Jay Gatsby’s mansion has been described as a “colossal affair by any measure” and an “imitation of some Hôtel de Ville in Normandy.”
It had a “tower on one side, brand new under a thin beard of raw ivy, and a marble swimming pool and more than forty acres of lawn and garden.”
Midjourney got this information and generated the building, with a multitude of rooms with tall windows and an impressive lawn.
In the novel, Jay Gatsby is obsessed with the idea of reuniting with his former lover, Daisy Buchanan, who lives in the same area.
Her estate has been described as a “cheerful red-and-white Georgian colonial mansion,” as well as “elaborate,” “bright,” and “pink.”
The AI software took all of this into account and produced a clever red brick building surrounded by roses and topiaries.
The classic look contrasts with the Gatsby household, which is larger than life and represents the upper class overconsumption of the period.
This AI-generated image shows Pemberley House, the home of Mr Fitzwilliam Darcy in Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice, which is described as a “big, beautiful, stone building”
2. Pride and Prejudice – Jane Austen
The AI-generated image above shows Pemberley House, the home of Mr Fitzwilliam Darcy in Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice.
This book tells the story of Elizabeth Bennet, a middle-class young woman who meets and eventually falls in love with him.
But to begin with, the two characters are complete opposites. Where Elizabeth is level-headed, Mr. Darcy is proud and pompous.
This is reflected in his estate, which is described as a ‘large, fine, stone building’ and ‘backed by a ridge of high wooded hills’.
There is also a stream in front ‘without any artificial appearance’, and the banks ‘were neither formal nor falsely decorated’.
This symbolizes how Mr. Darcy’s arrogant facade coexists with true honesty and integrity, which Elizabeth’s visit to Pemberley helped her realize.
Perhaps one of the most famous addresses in the world, 221b Baker Street (pictured) is where Sherlock Holmes and Dr. John Watson solved crimes in 60 stories
Although there is now a museum dedicated to the detective at 221B Baker Street in London (pictured), numbers on the street were not that high at the time of writing
3. Sherlock Holmes – Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
Perhaps one of the most famous addresses in the world, 221b Baker Street is where Sherlock Holmes and Dr. John Watson solved crimes in 60 stories.
Although there is now a museum dedicated to the detective at this London location, the numbers on the streets at the time of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s writing were not that high.
But in “A Study in Scarlet,” Holmes’s fictional flat is said to have consisted of “a pair of comfortable bedrooms and a single large airy sitting-room, cheerfully furnished and lit by two wide windows.”
Indeed, the numerous stage productions and film and TV adaptations of the books have led to the 19th century location being reimagined over and over again.
Sherlock Holmes even holds the Guinness World Record for ‘most portrayed literary person in film and TV’.
The AI took into account different sets and descriptions when recreating the humble terrace building.
It has Victorian architecture, large windows and is dimly lit, perhaps to avoid attracting Moriarty’s attention.
In “To Kill a Mockingbird,” Boo Radley lives with his father Nathan in a house described as “low” with a “deep porch and green shutters” (pictured)
4. Killing a Mockingbird – Harper Lee
Harper Lee’s ‘To Kill a Mockingbird’ tells the story of the Finch family who live in the fictional town of Maycomb, Alabama, USA during the Great Depression.
The two children, Scout and Jem, try to get their reclusive neighbor Arthur ‘Boo’ Radley to leave his house, and they become friends.
Boo lives with his father, Nathan Radley, and their home is described as “low” with a “deep porch and green shutters.”
Lee’s novel also says it was “once white” but had “darkened to the color of the slate-gray yard that surrounds it.”
It had “rain-rotten shingles,” “oaks (which) kept the sun out,” and a “swept” yard that was never swept.”
All of these elements were taken into account by Midjourney to give a creepy looking neglected building that would fascinate the Finch kids.
Kirsty Oakes, Head of Product and Marketing at Hammonds Furniture added: ‘Reading is a therapeutic pastime that can relieve stress and help escape the real world.
We hope these beautiful images will inspire more readers to pick up their favorite book this World Book Day and inspire others to read more.
“Creating a comfortable and quiet space to fully immerse yourself in the story is essential and once you’ve finished reading, the books can be used as decoration in living rooms or home offices.”
Instagram photographer admits his portraits are all AI-generated
An Instagram photographer who garnered thousands of followers thanks to his stunning portraits has admitted that they are actually fakes.
The apparent ‘photos’ were created by Midjourney – software that uses artificial intelligence (AI) to generate images – and updated in Photoshop.
Jos Avery, from the US, even gave each character a name, geo tag and touching story that he added in the image captions, but these are marked as fictional.
The photo-realistic black and white images helped his Instagram account, @averyseasonart, gain nearly 29,000 followers since he first posted in October.
However, after admitting that the images were AI-generated, he received some backlash from followers who felt cheated.
Read more here
An Instagram photographer who garnered thousands of followers thanks to his stunning portraits has admitted that they are actually fakes