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Forget green screens, AI paints your wildest dreams for Insta Stories

NurPhoto via Getty Images

Every day brings a new wave of generative AI developments, and while the news often tends to be serious and technical, this time it’s all about pure fun. Instagram has unveiled a playful generative AI-driven tool called “backdrop,” adding a creative twist to your Stories. Ahmad Al-Dahle, Meta’s generative AI lead, introduced the feature on Threads, complete with a video tutorial.

Once you upload or capture content for your Story on Instagram, the backdrop tool becomes accessible alongside familiar icons at the top of your screen, like text and music. Represented by an image of a person with a rectangular frame behind them, the backdrop icon catches your eye. To use backdrop, simply click on the icon, and the entire background of your image adopts a checkered pattern (reminiscent of picture editors like Photoshop). A text box prompts you to “describe the backdrop you want…” From there, you can add imaginative scenarios, such as “surrounded by puppies” or “chased by dinosaurs” — each resulting in a unique background generated by the AI tool.

While your Story viewers may not mistake you for actually being under the aurora borealis (another potential prompt), Instagram tags your Story with AI·Backdrop, accompanied by a sticker inviting others to try it and your description in quotation marks. Presently, Instagram’s backdrop tool is exclusively available to users in the United States.

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