Do words hurt?

By Long Nguyen

As simple as they look, words hurt people more than guns do, but they also heal people more than any medicine ever does. Humans are complicated, and that sometimes is a curse. What slips out of our mouth might affect people more than we think it would: a joke might push someone to their limits, but a compliment might save them from suicide.

Throughout 20 years of my life, I’ve received comments that I could never forget, though they might mean nothing to the speakers. It intrigues me how AI, with its objective point of view, would perceive those words. Therefore, I used AI to turn those comments to images, then merge the results with personal pics – ones that, I think, would illustrate well my feeling when receiving those words. I’m excited to see if they’re going to be great combinations or disaster contrast.

‘Con co may di an dem, dau phai canh mem lon co xuong ao’. This is a Vietnamese lullaby that mom used to sing to me when I was a kid. It always reminds me of her warm hugs.

Tools used:

  • Runway ML text-to-image generator
  • Pixlr – photo editor