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Leonardo AI – AI Art Generator Review – A True Midjourney Contender?

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Overview

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Leonardo AI is one of the biggest and best AI art generators. Leonardo AI’s Discord server already has more than 1M members. While the site states itself as a game asset generator, Leonardo AI is a lot more than just that.

With an extensive array of features, it offers a full-stack AI image generation experience, rivaling other platforms in the industry, especially Midjourney. The platform provides outpainting, inpainting, model training, canvas editing, and more.

The user interface is exciting and engaging, although it may initially seem overwhelming due to the numerous options available. It displays your token balance and the token consumption per image generation, allowing you to keep track of your usage. On average, one image uses two tokens, and you can generate up to eight images simultaneously.

One of the standout features is Leonardo Alchemy, a transformative image generation tool. It employs sophisticated training techniques to effortlessly handle high-resolution image generation, resulting in extraordinary image quality.

Alchemy offers options for resolution increase, contrast boost, and detail enhancement.

Leonardo.ai offers a few pricing plans, including a free plan with 150 daily token allocations and paid plans starting from $10/month. Commercial use of AI-generated images is permitted.

With its extensive feature set, Leonardo AI provides a comprehensive and versatile platform for creating AI art.

Features And User Interface

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Leonardo AI’s user interface.

Leonardo AI is filled with features with which you can generate AI art. The platform has outpainting, inpainting, proprietary AI art models, custom user-generated AI art models, model training, canvas (similar to what Playground AI has) for image editing, etc.

Leonardo AI feels like a full-stack AI image generation platform continuously developed to rival Midjourney. The feature palette is massive and continuously expanded with the innovation the AI industry is bringing to the table.

The user interface is exciting and fun to use, while at first, it’s a bit overwhelming with all the options, sliders, and buttons.

The user interface shows you how many tokens you have left and how many tokens each image generation takes. On average, one image uses two tokens. You can generate up to 8 images at a time.

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Using Leonardo AI’s image-to-image function.

As with Playground AI and Getimg, Leonardo AI’s outpainting and inpainting are limited to be used with Stable Diffusion v1.5 and Stable Diffusion v2.1. In comparison to a locally installed Stable Diffusion, you can use any diffusion model to do out painting and inpainting, which generates coherent AI art.

Check out: How to use Stable Diffusion

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Opening an image gives you plenty of options to continue the AI art generation process. Remix, Copy prompt, and Image2Image are available for selection.

Features you get with Leonardo AI (some are only available for paid plans, and some are coming soon):

  • Leonardo fine-tuned models
    • Essential Leonardo models
    • Expanded Leonardo models
    • Community models
    • Train up to 10 models per month
    • Retain up to 10 models
  • Style-consistent generations
    • Leonardo custom pipeline
    • Image-2-Image
    • Image Prompts
    • Magic Prompt
    • Pose-2-Image
    • Prompt generation
    • Tiling
    • Commercial use
    • Private generations
    • Relaxed generation queue
    • Custom fine-tuning settings
  • Leonardo Canvas
    • Style consistent engine
    • Masking/erasing
    • Inpainting
    • Outpainting
    • Painting tools
    • Layer management
  • 3D texturing
    • Texture-to-texture
  • Special perks
    • Early access to new features
    • API access
    • Custom upscale settings

Finetuned Models

Leonardo AI offers plenty of AI art models that you can use to generate AI art.

Some of the best models in Leonardo AI:

  • Absolute Reality
  • SDXL
  • 3D Animation Style
  • Leonardo Diffusion
  • RPG 4.0
  • DreamShaper (multiple versions)
  • Deliberate 1.1
  • Magic Potions
  • Crystal Deposits
  • Isometric Scifi Buildings
  • Shields

It’s clearly visible from the model selection that Leonardo started as a platform to create video game assets. However, the recent art model additions have taken Leonardo in the direction of art creation and not solely offering models for game asset creation.

Feed

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From the user interface, you can access the Community, Personal, Followers, and Liked feeds. The best part is that you can easily continue your art creation from where you left off, see what others are creating, and continue other AI artists’ work by using the Remix option (when you open an image in the community feed).

Leonardo Alchemy

Leonardo Alchemy is a transformative image generation tool that aims to unlock your creative potential. It is a brand-new and bespoke 2D image pipeline designed to generate images of extraordinary quality. Alchemy utilizes sophisticated training techniques that allow it to effortlessly handle high-resolution image generation without compromising on quality.

Alchemy is currently in the beta phase and is available as early access for paid users.

The High-Resolution toggle allows users to increase the resolution of their images by 1.5x or 2x, resulting in sharper and more detailed outputs.

The Contrast Boost feature can improve contrast in the generated images, although users can reduce it if the output appears too dark. The Resonance option adds more detail to the images.

You can boost your input resolution, but it should be noted that the render process becomes more complex, resulting in higher token costs.

The tool provides a range of Alchemy-specific presets that users can select from the dropdown menu below the prompt input box. The default preset is “General,” represented by the 🧪 symbol. Alchemy supports Image2Image and Prompt Magic v3.

Alchemy can’t be used with SDXL as of yet.

Elements

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Leonardo AI has plenty of different Elements (LoRAs) that you can use to stylize your AI art creations.

Leonardo Elements, Leonardo AI’s custom implementation of LoRA models, is now accessible on the platform. Leonardo offers an ever-expanding collection of Elements that push the boundaries of image generation.

Getting started with Elements is a breeze. Click ‘Add Elements’ below the prompt generation input, then select up to four Elements to combine or use individually. Experiment with various styles, find your preferences and let your creativity flow.

Once you’ve made your selection, fine-tune your results by adjusting the weights for each Element to achieve the perfect balance for your generation.

Pricing

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Leonardo.ai has multiple pricing plans, each in line with the rest of the industry. Leonardo.ai offers a free plan, where you get 150 tokens each day (do not roll over to the next day), $10/month (Apprentice), $24/month (Artisan), and a $48/month (Maestro) plan.

All of the plans (except the free plan) are more or less the same; the only difference is the number of images you can generate per plan.

You can use AI-generated images commercially.

Check out: Copyright and Ownership in AI art

Pros And Cons

ProsCons
You get 150 tokens per day in the free plan.The number of features, customization, and options can overwhelm a new user.
The overall art quality.
User interface and the overall user experience.
You can generate eight images at a time.
Leonardo Alchemy.
Amount of features, options, and customization.
Pricing.
A genuinely viable alternative to Midjourney.
Outpainting, inpainting, and image editing can be done with multiple different diffusion models.
Supports LoRAs through Elements.
A table detailing the pros and cons of using Leonardo AI.

User Experiences

“I tried using variations or synonyms of “full shot” in the prompt, hoping I’d get my subject fully in frame, but I usually end up with the part of the subject getting cropped out. It totally ruins the composition. I’ve had this happen in countless almost-perfect images.”

“I stopped using Leonardo a while back because of this. It makes nice portraits, but it’s so boring. It’s all portraits of girls. Composition is bad as well.”

“the best solution that I have received is to turn off Prompt Magic. And it made such a difference.”

“I’m having so much fun, but there is one problem that I can’t seem to figure out. Whenever I want the AI to generate the face of a famous football player or actor, the face is always wrong.”

My Experience

“When you first start to use Leonardo AI, it feels a bit confusing as there are so many options, settings, sliders, etc., available for you. However, after using it for a while, you get used to the interface and soon appreciate all your options. While Canvas gives you inpainting, outpainting, and general image editing, it still lacks the free diffusion model selection that locally installed Stable Diffusion has. Leonardo AI is easy to use, fun, and it has more than a lot of features to generate the best possible AI art”.

Feature image credits.

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Okuha

Digital Artist

I’m a digital artist who is passionate about anime and manga art. My true artist journey pretty much started with CTRL+Z. When I experienced that and the limitless color choices and the number of tools I could use with art software, I was sold. Drawing digital anime art is the thing that makes me happy among eating cheeseburgers in between veggie meals.

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