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How to Achieve the Best Images With Midjourney

Posted By: Laura C
Posted On: August 20, 2023

Generated using Midjourney


A Closer Look at the Phenomenal Results with Midjourney: A Step-by-Step Guide

Have you ever marveled at the incredibly lifelike images some individuals manage to churn out using AI image generators? Welcome to the era of futuristic graphics, with Midjourney as its torchbearer. Let’s dive into harnessing the full power of Midjourney with top tips for photorealistic results.

AI image generators have metamorphosed into digital alchemy tools, conjuring visuals traditional stock images would envy. As artists and designers, you have the choice: tread the conventional path or embrace Midjourney magic.

Midjourney’s reputation is echoing loud and clear within AI circles, all credited to its uncanny ability to craft spellbinding images. Be it a picture-perfect portrait or a dynamic artwork, this guide is your compass to mastering Midjourney.

To get started, remember that Midjourney operates through Discord. So, set up a Discord account to kick things off. Once you’re in, a certain number of free ‘processing minutes’ welcome you. But for more extensive use, you’ll need to explore subscription options.

Tip 1: Prioritize & Shorten Your Descriptions

In the Midjourney world, opening phrases wield significant influence. Essential details to be showcased? Place them upfront. Also, you don’t need to be too wordy. A concise, straightforward prompt often fetches the best results.

Tip 2: Arm Yourself With Photographic Lingo

Harnessing the Midjourney magic requires speaking its language. Integrating terms associated with lighting, cameras, and film can drastically up your game. Dropping camera names, say Nikon D850 or Canon EOS 5D, can be game-changers. Film aficionados can sprinkle references to Fujifilm or Agfa Vista. Mastering lighting jargon like “rim lighting” or “diffused lighting” can amp up your image quality.

For instance: “Captured shot of a vintage car under a golden sunset, backlit to emphasize contours, Canon EOS 5D Mark IV.”

You can see that it still doesn’t look very realistic, so let’s try to improve that!

Tip 3: Style It Up With Midjourney

Give Midjourney a style to use! Using terms like “style by”, “film still”, or “reminiscent of” can steer Midjourney towards specific styles. For instance, for a car shot, you could specify “Frame evoking a classic car magazine spread from the 2020s” to add a distinct touch to your image.

Fine-tuning Midjourney’s Output: 

  1. Aspect Ratio Control: Use the --ar instruction to define your desired aspect ratio. For instance, --ar 16:9 ensures that Midjourney won’t produce a square image, but rather one that fits a widescreen format.
  2. Quality Boost: Incorporate the --q 2 instruction to compel Midjourney to deliver its highest possible image quality. Bear in mind, this will double the computational credits used, but the enhanced clarity and detail are often worth the trade-off.
  3. Seed Variation: Infusing variation into your image generations is seamless with the seed command, such as --seed 3000. It introduces an element of randomness to the output, ensuring each creation is distinct.
  4. Version Specification: Direct Midjourney to use a particular version with commands like --v 5, ensuring you’re leveraging the capabilities of your preferred iteration.

With these parameters in mind, let’s illustrate with an example: The following prompt produced an evocative image, “Frame evoking a classic car magazine spread from the 2020s, Captured shot of a vintage car under a golden sunset, backlit to emphasize contours, Canon EOS 5D Mark IV –ar 16:9 –seed 3000 –v 5”.

Want to create a still frame from a 1980s French romantic drama? No problem! The images below came from the prompt “Film still, style by 1980s French romantic drama. Starring Catherine Deneuve, Gérard Depardieu, and Alain Delon. Eighties European fashion. Soft focus, with a touch of film grain, Kodak 200T, subtle warm lighting, bokeh, 50mm lens, f1.8 –ar 16:9 –seed 1500 –q 2 –v 5”.

What’s remarkable about these is how they have recreated the soft ambiance, fashion, and characterizations with nostalgic authenticity.

Compare these to the image below, which we specified as a more up-to-date style with “Film still, style by 2020s French contemporary drama. Starring Audrey Tautou. Crisp and detailed, fine grain, Kodak 200T, balanced lighting, 50mm lens, f1.8 –ar 16:9 –seed 2000 –q 2 –v 5”.

Tip 4: Reference Images: Midjourney’s Secret Sauce

While understanding and deploying essential commands such as --ar, --q 2, and --seed can significantly refine your image, sometimes the results might not align with your vision, especially for complex dynamic scenes. This is where reference images come into play, acting as Midjourney’s guiding star.

Imagine wanting a snapshot from a passionate tango or a high-energy ballet performance. Due to the intricate positioning of the human body, Midjourney can sometimes misinterpret such dynamic movements, leading to unexpected or humorous outcomes.

So, how do we rectify this? By providing Midjourney with a reference. Find an image that closely aligns with the desired output. This could be a popular photo online or a candid shot from your phone. Upon uploading, the image will appear in your chat. Simply enlarge the image with a click, right-click to “Copy image link,” and prepend this link to your prompt.

Dancer: Natalia Osipova / Credit: The Telegraph


Take, for example, the below command that was inspired by a reference from a ballet performance resulting in the captivating spin: [image link here] + “Film still capturing the essence of a ballet spin. Dynamic stage action, vibrant costumes, and high-energy emotions. Channel the style and ambiance of the reference image with modern interpretations. –ar 16:9 –seed 2345 –q 2 –v 5”.

The inclusion of reference images can be a game-changer, transforming the abstract into the tangible, and giving Midjourney a clearer path towards your envisioned output.

Tip 5: Elevate Portraits With Intricate Descriptions

Craving a detailed portrait? Terms like “distinct facial features” or “detailed facial contours” can be instrumental: Imagine/ Sunset-gazing mature woman hiker. Illuminated skin, detailed facial contours, Nikon D850 snapshot.

Tip 6: Perfecting with Multiple Iterations

Regenerate, regenerate, and regenerate some more. Masterpieces aren’t born; they’re refined. With Midjourney, iteration is your friend. The “–prefer remix” gem allows the reshaping of existing visuals. For example, you could change a photograph of a pile of tennis balls and make them into a group of kittens.

Venturing Deeper Into Midjourney’s Potential

Midjourney is more than just a tool; it’s a canvas of limitless possibilities. While it offers avenues to create breathtaking visuals, it also challenges us to refine and perfect our vision. It’s essential to approach it with patience and creativity. At times, the results may surprise or even baffle, but each attempt is a step towards mastering the art of AI-driven imagery. In this vast digital realm, with Midjourney as your ally, every endeavor can be a step closer to your next masterpiece. Dive in, experiment, and let your creativity shine!

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