Ever felt like adding some Van Gogh-style swirls to your photos? Now you can. A Russian project called Ostagram allows Internet users to combine photos and works of art to create fantastical images that wouldn't be out of place in the world of Alice in Wonderland or in a sci-fi space opera.
The Ostagram project, created by user Sergey Morugin, is a web service that uses a computer algorithm to combine the content of one image with the style of another image using convolutional neural networks. This means you can get a photo of your dog to look like a Monet painting, if you pick the dog pic as the source for content, and the Monet artwork as a source for style.
Researchers from Google, who have been experimenting with artificial neural networks and image recognition, call this combination technique Inceptionism, inspired by the deep neural net architecture and the “We need to go deeper” meme from the movie Inception, itself a speculation on the relationship between dreams and reality.
Morugin has made the code for his Ostagram web algorithm available to everyone on GitHub and says his combination of neural network processing and an art styling algorithm is based on work by other coders, including Leon Gatys, Alexander Ecker, and Matthias Bethge.
Check out some of the awesome Inceptionist images generated by Ostagram users below, or better yet, register on the website and create your own.