Killer Advice on How to Create Creepy AI Art From NightCafe Artist Robot9000


Here we are, another week another Artist Spotlight! If this is your first time stumbling upon this, welcome! The Artist Spotlight series is something we’ve started here at NightCafe Studio to help bring once gatekept AI art creation secrets to the masses! Our goal in this is to inspire you with secrets you typically wouldn’t get anywhere else.

Today we are chatting with Mr. Luis Ruiz, A.K.A. Robot9000 (or R9K).🔥 He is known for creating stunning hellscapes, hyper-detailed smoldering scenes, and beautiful alien creature creations. So, let’s take a deep dive into his thought process learn a few things from the mastermind himself! Keep reading to see what he has to say:

An Intricate Gas Mask for Cthulhu by Robot9000
An Intricate Gas Mask for Cthulhu by Robot9000

NC: What got you started as an artist on NightCafe?

R9K: I was doing experiments with RunwayML, ArtBreeder, Maya, and the Adobe Suite, around October 2021 and I read about NightCafe Studio in a blog about AI Art. I was very curious… I bought 40 credits and I was hooked. My first works were not amazing, but I knew that with my imagination and references to my childhood artistic heroes from Heavy Metal Magazine, Creepy, Eerie, of course Marvel and DC that I would eventually crack the code and create dope pieces of Art. I do not think most would believe that I have so many works that I have not published in the NightCafe Studio website. I have over 300 I have not even shown and about 1500 works generated from different AI apps but NightCafe Studio is my favorite. 

Gundam Mutant War by Robot9000
Gundam Mutant War by Robot9000

NC: What are some of your favorite modifiers to use in your text prompts? Why?

R9K: This question is tricky because it’s all dependent on the style I'm feeling or going for. If it's realism then I use prompts from the Merriam Webster Dictionary/Thesaurus and The Necronomicon. And of course words like mutation, depth of field, bokeh, volumetric lighting, V-Ray, 8K resolution, and hyperrealism are always part of my arsenal when creating.

If I'm going for supernatural/horror experimentation (I love to rock scary weird horror) then it’s definitely a mash up of Yasushi Nirasawa, Moebius, Frank Frazetta, Junji Ito, Kazuo Umezo, Wayne Barlowe, Gustavo Dore, Giger, Clive Barker, and Zdzisław Beksiński. Words like concept art, demonic possession, vapor, volumetric lighting, polished, and matte painting are always part of my modifiers.

“I use a trick on most of my works (that works for me repeatedly) by repeating certain words or details throughout my prompt.”

If it's science fiction then I give details like volumetric sunset, nuclear blast, galactic portal, or vapor trails and I use a trick on most of my works (that works for me repeatedly) by repeating certain words or details throughout my prompt like fire, smoke, gory, illuminated, etc.

Again, I love to experiment so it’s never the same look. I want to be free to develop the main prompt and try new variants always.

NC: Do you use start images? If so, what are your requirements for a good start image?

R9K: I use start images all the time. I have hard drives full of stock footage, medical books, Google, and pictures I take on my iPhone. I also use the mess-ups that are epic fails and re-use them. A requirement for most starter images is extreme contrast/saturation for coherent outputs and detail for artistic outputs.

NC: That’s good to know!

Space GhostRider by Robot9000
Space GhostRider by Robot9000

NC: What inspires your work most?

R9K: There are many things that inspire my works but in no specific order it would be the mystery of outcome, my children, the perseverance of wanting my developed images to become amazing, science fiction and horror.

I've grown up with fantastic inspirations that have been part of my artistic development since I was 6 years old. My brother gave me a box of comics that contained FF 2-25, Spider-Man/Hulk early issues, and a ton of DC Golden and Silver Age books. My Biological father gave me a stack of Heavy Metal books #1-16 when I was 12 and the rest is history, yo!

NC: Are there any tips or tricks you’d like to give artists just starting out on NightCafe Studio?

R9K: I would say to the newbie AI Artist… Don’t be afraid to experiment! If it looks weak, strange, or not to your liking, push forward. Test different ideas and modifiers until you get results you love. It’s about having fun, learning, and sharing. Do not be overwhelmed by feeling like you have to be a Rockstar at it. Play.

Join Discord’s communities like NightCafe Studio or VQGAN & Clip Art Community. Or hit me up on my DMs on Instagram @robot9000. I will help you!

“Test different ideas and modifiers until you get results you love. It’s about having fun, learning, and sharing. Do not be overwhelmed by feeling like you have to be a Rockstar at it.”

NC: Do you have a background in art?

R9K: Yes. I went to SCAD for my BFA in Computer Animation. I’m a certified Autodesk Maya and Adobe Suite user and I’ve been a freelance Multimedia Artist for over 17 years. I’ve worked at Mattel Toys, The History Channel, worked for celebrities, and been in education for 13 years. I teach motion graphics, 2D/3D animation, and toy design at Art Institute San Antonio, Texas and Otis College of Art and Design in Los Angeles, CA.

I love art and know over 32 softwares.

NC: What role do you think AI art has in society?

R9K: I look at generative Art and AI like the new Polaroid and a tool that helps artists conceptualize faster and more efficiently. I also see AI’s role as a key development for humans to self express faster with the aid of computation and predictions. 

I feel it is a win, win situation for man and machine.

Love is Blue by Robot9000
Love is Blue by Robot9000

NC: Pick one: Coherent or Artistic creation setting? Why?

R9K: This one is difficult because I have a recipe book of many variables and arrangements. Here’s one I made for Slurm, my imaginary version of future covid on another world/dimension. (See below)

[The prompt was] “mutated ants and alien tentacles coming out of a creatures open bloody wound hyperrealism V-Ray volumetric lighting 8k resolution beautiful”. The seed number was 72082 and the starter image was from a previous output. 

I chose Artistic. Why did I select this one?

Well, the proof is in the image.

It looks real and very grotesque.

r9K’s kind of style.

I am visceral and punk-rock like the band, The Prodigy. 


Wow, what a fun and information filled interview that was! For anyone out there with a more gruesome style of art, Robot9000 is the guy you want to be following. By using multiple different resources and methods of inspiration he's able to conduct the NightCafe AI’s to create some pretty gnarly pieces. Thank you so much R9k for sharing some of your wonderful secrets with us!

You can find Robot9000’s NightCafe profile here and his Instagram page @Robot9000 here.

 We will see you next next week with another installation of our Artist Spotlight! Happy creating!

Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published