Tuesday, January 25, 2022

Why is NFT worth money

Ultimately, NFTs seem to be helping digital creators solve an age-old problem: creating value around digital assets that could otherwise be easily reproduced and shared on the internet an infinite amount of times. Thanks to blockchain technology and NFTs, digital creators now have an easy, simplified way to automatically keep track of and distribute money owed.

What the heck is an NFT (& what does it mean for digital artists)

You’ve probably heard the term NFT, or Non-Fungible Token thrown around a lot lately. But what exactly does it mean, and as a designer, why should you care? In this article, we explore what NFTs mean in the context of digital art, plus, how you can start turning your creations into sought-after NFTs. Let’s get straight into it!

What is an NFT?

Simply put, an NFT, or Non-Fungible Token, is a unit of currency stored on the blockchain that contains a unique digital file (e.g. images, audio, video, games, etc.).

When you buy an NFT, the digital content can still travel freely through the internet, but you own the “real” original file. The more hype this piece of digital content gets, the more value the NFT accrues.

Fungible vs. Non-Fungible

Before diving further into how NFTs work, it’s worth understanding the difference between fungibility and non-fungiblity.

A fungible asset is an asset that can be exchanged (or substituted) with similar assets of the same value. Currency is fungible, for example. The value of a $100 dollar bill will stay the same if you exchange it for five $20 dollar bills.

Unlike currency, non-fungible assets are unique and can not be interchanged. A classic example to illustrate non-fungibility is the famous Mona Lisa painting. There is only one original Mona Lisa housed at the Louvre—but there are thousands of prints for sale on the market. Of course, a Mona Lisa print does not hold the same value as the original portrait. The original portrait is considered to be a non-fungible asset as it is unique and can not be interchanged.

Mona Lisa by Rahul Khobragade

Mona Lisa by Rahul Khobragade

How NFTs work for digital creators

Traditionally in the art world, once a physical piece is sold, the artist no longer receives revenue from its future sales. However, when you sell a digital file through an NFT, you continue to make money long after that first transaction. As the original creator of the digital asset, you get a cut from every future sale of that NFT.

The concept is similar to royalties with the main difference being that NFTs can be automatically tracked and reconciled using the blockchain with no third-party required. With NFTs, this royalty is automatically collected and distributed on every sale through the decentralized blockchain.

Ultimately, NFTs allow digital artists to create scarcity for their creations, track future sales on that artwork, and share in the future value created.

Tools by Joanna Nowak

Art by Joanna Nowak

How to get started using NFTs

If you’re a graphic designer, you might be wondering how you can start turning your digital creations into sought-after NFTs. What does the process look like for creating (or ‘minting’) an NFT, and how much will it cost you?

First, you’ll need to have ETH (the cryptocurrency used for all transactions on Ethereum) and set up an ethereum wallet. Then, you’ll need to do some research on NFT marketplaces to choose the right platform based on the kind of digital assets you plan on selling.

Once you’ve chosen your platform, the cost of minting an NFT will typically range anywhere between $70 - $100. If your NFT sells, however, you’ll be charged an additional “gas fee” which tends to fluctuate greatly.

Once you’ve minted an NFT, you determine the starting price and how much in royalties you want to receive. Then, it’s up to you to promote your NFT online with a ‘drop’ and wait for the bidding war to begin.

Women in Crypto by DianaTraykov

Women in Crypto by DianaTraykov

Why would someone buy an NFT?

People have long been able to buy tangible collectibles like paintings, sports memorabilia, vintage cars, etc. And if you’re a buyer of collectibles, you’ll typically pay middleman experts to verify the authenticity of these pieces of work.

NFTs are essentially the digital equivalent of collectible items. With NFT’s, the blockchain serves as a built-in verification system where an item can be instantly traced back to its origin. Because NFTs are able to create digital scarcity, they are able to tap into a buyer’s desire to collect—something that was previously unavailable (or unverifiable) for digital assets. Plus, they can also be used as a store of value that potentially grows over time.

Are NFTs here to stay?

Ultimately, NFTs seem to be helping digital creators solve an age-old problem: creating value around digital assets that could otherwise be easily reproduced and shared on the internet an infinite amount of times. Thanks to blockchain technology and NFTs, digital creators now have an easy, simplified way to automatically keep track of and distribute money owed.

While many are excited about the prospect of making money with NFTs, others skepticize whether it’s simply another cryptocurrency fad that will eventually become irrelevant. Will NFTs give new meaning and significance to digital art? Maybe, as long as collectors are willing to continue buying them. Only time will tell. ■

In gaming, NFTs are used to create characters, avatars and items that players can collect to assist their gameplay and trade with other players. An item’s value depends on its use and rarity. Developers implement smart contracts that set out how NFTs function within the game. The contracts are stored on the blockchain. Items are traded as if they were physical assets. Each transaction is recorded on the blockchain.

What are NFT games?

Gaming is touted as one of the markets in which NFTs can play a role in driving growth. They enable content developers to monetise their creations, while players can earn cryptocurrencies by engaging with content.

NFTs use blockchain ledgers to authenticate unique digital collectibles. This is key to how NFT games work.

In gaming, NFTs are used to create characters, avatars and items that players can collect to assist their gameplay and trade with other players. An item’s value depends on its use and rarity. Developers implement smart contracts that set out how NFTs function within the game. The contracts are stored on the blockchain. Items are traded as if they were physical assets. Each transaction is recorded on the blockchain.

One of the first games with NFT characters was CryptoKitties, which launched in 2017 on the Ethereum blockchain. In CryptoKitties, players collect, breed and trade digital cats. Each cat is a unique NFT. Smart contracts define their characteristics and rarity, which in turn determine their value on the traded market.

“We launched CryptoKitties at the end of 2017… to show that you could do other stuff with blockchain other than decentralized finance,” @DapperLabs Head of Partnerships @CatyTedman says. “We landed on cats. The internet loves cats.” https://t.co/0LV2005gNR pic.twitter.com/xXrJWTO0sQ

— Yahoo Finance (@YahooFinance) October 25, 2021

Games like CryptoKitties release a limited number of NFTs, which are subsequently only available on secondary markets. Other games enable players to create new NFT items to use in gameplay.

Some NFT-earning games are designed as metaverses, in which players can receive rewards for playing the game and advancing their skills. Games reward players with cryptocurrency tokens, which they can use to buy the NFTs.

Players own in-game items, giving them the chance to earn money by reselling their NFTs on secondary markets, renting them to other players or transferring them off the platform. And because smaller cryptocurrencies have attracted interest from investors looking for large returns, tokens from a game like Axie Infinity have gained value on cryptocurrency exchanges.

This potential to make money is helping to drive the popularity of NFT play-to-earn games. Players can convert their tokens into fiat currency on exchanges. In developing countries, this can be a source of income for people who play NFT games to make money.

According to the BBC, unlucky seller maxnaut accidentally sold the Bored Ape NFT number 3,547 for $3,000 instead of $300,000, all due to a typo. He put the NFT up for sale on Saturday and entered “0.75 ETH” instead of “75 ETH” when listing the asset.

Not The First Time

Also known as “fat-finger” errors, they are not uncommon in the world of crypto trading. As recollected by CNET, the company behind the Tether cryptocurrency almost doubled its digital coin supply when it created new coins worth $5 billion because of a typo.

“In March, BlockFi meant to send 700 Gemini Dollars to a set of customers, worth roughly $1 each, but mistakenly sent out millions of dollars worth of bitcoin instead. Last month a company erroneously paid a $24 million fee on a $100,000 transaction.”

As NFT collections become more valuable —as is the case with Bored Ape— these types of accidents have become more common over the past year.

Last August, a user made the mistake of listing a Bored Ape NFT for $26,000, well below the original price. The blunder was capitalized by a buyer who was quick enough to “steal” the asset and resold it for a whopping $150,000 after turning down the original owner’s $50,000 offer to return it.

Also, in November, a user selling a CryptoPunk NFT listed it for $19,000 instead of $19 million while the fortunate buyer later placed it on sale for $1.4 million.

Just like the metaverse has captivated the imagination of the game industry, so to have nonfungible tokens (NFTs). But while the metaverse has been dismissed as science fiction hype, NFTs have stirred even more haters.

The DeanBeat: Why NFT game startups will win while big publishers wait for regulation

NFTs are a flashpoint for Valve.

Join gaming leaders, alongside GamesBeat and Facebook Gaming, for their 2nd Annual GamesBeat & Facebook Gaming Summit | GamesBeat: Into the Metaverse 2 this upcoming January 25-27, 2022. Learn more about the event.

Just like the metaverse has captivated the imagination of the game industry, so to have nonfungible tokens (NFTs). But while the metaverse has been dismissed as science fiction hype, NFTs have stirred even more haters.

But after listening to a lot of talks at our GamesBeat Summit Next online event this week, I’m convinced that the startups are going to win the NFT gaming market as it moves toward mass adoption. I’ll back up my argument, but first I have some explaining to do because some very big gaming companies are turning like battleships into the NFT market.

If you look at Google Trends, you’ll see that NFTs started picking up in February and skyrocketed after related NFT sales like digital art and NBA Top Shot took off. Dapper Labs has now seen sales and resales of those NFTs top $780 million. In March, an NFT digital collage by the artist Beeple sold at Christie’s for $69.3 million. NFT sales hit $1.2 billion in the first quarter, $1.3 billion in the second quarter, and a whopping $10.7 billion in the third quarter as games such as Axie Infinity took off.

It’s a logical assumption that NFTs will sweep through gaming, much like they have through art. NFTs use the transparent and secure digital ledger of blockchain to uniquely authenticate one-of-a-kind items. This establishes digital ownership for players in games like Sky Mavis’ Axie Infinity, which has seen $2.4 billion in trading this year. This ownership model allows players to sell their leveled-up game characters for a profit, enabling a new business model for games dubbed “play-to-earn,” where players earn rewards.

This article was generated by Benzinga's automated content engine and reviewed by an editor.

Here's Why This Rare CryptoPunk NFT Just Sold For $1.2 Million In ETH

Here's Why This Rare CryptoPunk NFT Just Sold For .2 Million In ETH

CryptoPunks are a generative art collection, and one of the first ever applications of NFTs for digital art. There are only 10,000 Punks in existence, and some of them are thought to be lost forever.

What happened: CryptoPunk #9137 just sold for 300 ETH (CRYPTO: ETH) ($1,233,705 USD). The value of CryptoPunks is typically determined by Punk's attributes, with the hoodie, beanie, and pilot helmet traits being the most coveted. Other species of Punks (Zombies, Apes and Aliens) are incredibly rare and also sell for a premium.

Here are a list of its attributes and how many other Punks have the same trait:

  • Type: Male (6,039)
  • Accessory: Luxurious Beard (286)
  • Accessory: Hoodie (259)
  • Accessory: 3D Glasses (286)

Why it Matters: Cryptopunks are the ultimate rookie card for NFT collectors. CryptoPunks have earned huge influence in 2021, with dozens of Celebrities proudly showing off their punk ownership on Twitter. Cryptopunk sales are a leading indicator for the rest of the NFT market, and go to show that some are willing to spend serious coin on blockchain based art.

Price Action: Ethereum is currently trading at $4,167.71, up 3.16% over the past 24 hours.

Data provided by OpenSea.

This article was generated by Benzinga's automated content engine and reviewed by an editor.

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If there is one question, I see getting asked by Photographers about NFTs, it is about copyright. Who keeps the copyright to an image that is sold as an NFT? The simple answer is the photographer does. This is absolutely not a new phenomenon in Art. You have the option of transferring rights but by default, the artist always owns the copyright to their art. What you are selling is technically a variant of this product. The original copy on the blockchain.

What is an NFT and Why I have decided to put my Photography on a Blockchain.

What is an NFT

NFT Photography is here and for Photographers, this is great news. Every so often a new technology will come up that can and will affect how to trade, perceive things and own things. One such technology is the NFT. This technology is promising to change the way we sell art, and I am here for it.

I believe NFTs will be a game changer for Photographers, and it will bring back to life a lot of beautiful pieces of photographic art that may have never been shared, otherwise. It is something I think it will add value to Photography as a whole with more photographers looking to create art. I have decided to join the list of growing photographers who have decided to put their work up and immortalize them as NFTs. Before I explain why, let me first explain what an NFT is and elaborate further why it will be a game changer for Visual Artists, most especially Photographers.

What is an NFT?

NFT stands for Non-Fungible Token. We know what a token is. A token is physical or virtual object that represents something. What does it mean for a token to be Non-Fungible? Well, let us first look at the meaning of Fungible – When something is fungible, it means you are able to replace it with another item. So, a non-fungible token is a token that cannot be replaced. When you put your visual artwork as a non-fungible token, it pretty much gives it authenticity and says hey, this is the original, this is the starting point and no, this particular instance of it cannot be duplicated. You can call it a digital certificate of authenticity.

How do I sell or collect Photography as an NFT?

First of all, NFTs are attached to cryptocurrency. The most popular one being used at the moment and the one I use as of writing this is Ethereum. You will need a cryptocurrency wallet like Coinbase to first of all list your NFT. Collectors can purchase your NFT using Cryptocurrency like Etherium or Rarible, depending on where you list your NFT. The funds will be transferred to your crypocurrency wallet as cryptocurrency and if you want, you can convert it to Fiat, which is another term for money. From your listing to the purchase to the transfer, everything will happen and be logged on the blockchain. This blockchain can be tracked and is more transparent.

What is a Blockchain?

NFT Photography blockchain

A blockchain keeps a record of your cryptocurrency or NFT transaction, digitally. It records any transaction made with cryptocurrency. Let’s say you put your NFT on the Ethereum blockchain, the blockchain records every transaction made with that cryptocurrency and how your NFT moves from collection to collection (if the collector decided to sell it) on that blockchain. A collector can purchase an NFT for 1ETH and if the value goes up, sell it for 5ETH. All this will be logged on the blockchain. In this case, you can call it a transparent ledger for your artwork.

What does it mean when you put your Photographic art as an NFT?

It means you are giving your original work a digital footprint. Throughout the lifetime of this piece of artwork, photo, or any other form of visual art, you can use that token as its certificate of authentication. Wherever it goes and whichever hands it gets exchanged on, the token will follow, and I believe this is a game changer for visual artist, most especially Photographers who may sometimes find it hard to valuate their art.

Why NFT Photography?

When I first heard about NFTs and the prospects of having a digital footprint for my Photographic work, I was curious and excited at the same time. I decided to delve more into what this NFT does and during my research my excitement grew. This is a game changer, I told myself. While surfing through most of the NFTS out there, I noted that most were digital works like drawings, paintings, gifs, animations, but not a lot of Photography.

This meant, to me, there is still a huge void that has not been filled and by golly we shall fill it. It means in the coming months and years we will see the rise of more NFT Photographers. If you sell physical prints of your work, you can literally create an NFT and that NFT can come with a physical copy. You can attach trips, classes, and so many extras to your NFT but most importantly, you are attaching long term value to your work. I feel like with NFTs, the possibilities are endless.

Why is Photography important in the NFT space?
Light Show by Toni Payne

Photography is one of the oldest art forms and in my opinion, one of the most impactful. If you check history, photographic works have told stories and pretty much been a good source of us being able to go back in time. What foods were we eating in 2021? How was it presented? How did photographers in 2021 perceive things like still life or styling food, or landscape or architecture, travel and daily life. What was the political atmosphere like? I believe these things are important to document and are invaluable assets. Instead of valuable images wasting away on someone’s hard drive, the prospect of selling them as an NFT can give them life.

You see, Photography is about the most notable art form that documents life as accurately as possible. It is unique in what it achieves and, in my opinion, one of the most useful when you wish to look back at history. I also feel like because in modern times, most people have camera phones, photography has become an underrated type of art form. I believe NFTs can change this.

That one Question Photographers ask about NFTs

If there is one question, I see getting asked by Photographers about NFTs, it is about copyright. Who keeps the copyright to an image that is sold as an NFT? The simple answer is the photographer does. This is absolutely not a new phenomenon in Art. You have the option of transferring rights but by default, the artist always owns the copyright to their art. What you are selling is technically a variant of this product. The original copy on the blockchain.

You the photographer can keep the rights and can still produce physical copies or merchandise to promote the art further but on a blockchain, it belongs to the owner’s collection. There can only be one original NFT. This is one of the things that makes NFTs so special. So, the NFT gives blockchain ownership but not the copyright to your image, unless you agree to give it up. Keep in mind, all through art history, even with historical pieces like the Mona Lisa, even when the physical art piece is owned by the collector, the copyright has stayed with the artist or its estate until 70 years after the artist dies. I wrote more about this here.

My Photographic Style

My work is a mixture of Photography and Photography with Mixed Media. I have an affinity for still life photography, you can see it in my photos of food and places. I also love Architecture. As a matter of fact, I simply love to document what I find interesting. When I shoot created still life, I love to create with shadows.

At the same time, I love to capture the world around me, so when I shoot found still life, I work with angles and my environment. The goal of photography for me is to freeze in time how a person, place or thing looked at a particular point in time. This sometimes has no rules. So, when asked about my style, I say it varies, because I believe your creativity should never be boxed in. As creatives, we are on a constant journey of learning and being inspired and I feel like our art should translate that. I don’t limit myself to one style. Even famous artists like Monet changed their style with time.

Photography as an art form

What a lot of people do not know is that Photography is an art form that is centuries old with its first attempts dating back as far as 1717. The earliest known surviving photographic image however was done in 1825 by Joseph Nicéphore Niépce using the “heliographic process.”

When you now apply photography and think of it in an art form, just think of it as the same way a painter takes their brush and with each stroke, paints an image that captures our eye. This is also how a photographer takes their camera and captures an image of something, somewhere or someone that captures our eye and sometimes our soul.

NFT Photography solves some problems.

As a visual artist whose focus is photography, one of the challenges I believe I have faced is value. In an oversaturated market, how do you stand out? You know your work is great, you see its value but how do you translate this value? I believe the NFT fixes this issue. The NFT gives the image a sort of immortality, providing it is not deleted, albeit digitally. It can’t be damaged during shipping. No one can pour soda on it, and it is not going to rip because someone ran into it. What are the chances right? Well, you never know.

Why Metal Prints?

I offer optional Metal prints for some of my Still Life Photography art. One of the reasons I chose Metal Prints is because of durability and quality. Metal Photography Prints give access to both. As far as Metal prints go, the durability simplicity and style is something I feel my work deserves. What also makes it great is that, when you purchase my digital art form on a blockchain, you can also get the physical version to look at.

My Visual Art and it’s NFT Photography

My photography journey has been tumultuous. I came from an industry where I had it all figured out to start afresh somewhere where I had the knowledge and skills but not the recognition. It also came with me trying to find my creative voice and I believe this was the hardest part of it all. Most creatives understand the challenges of trying to find a place for your art in a vast world. Photography has been not only an outlet for me but also a savior of some sorts. When I pick up my camera, I do so with the intent of capturing images I am very proud to say I captured. As time goes on, I will continue to put my work up as NFTs. I hope this new found motivation will inspire me to capture more images that are timeless.

How do I purchase your NTF Photography Art?

Because my Art is on the Ethereum blockchain, you can purchase my NFT Art using the crypto currency Ethereum. My collection titled Everyday Africa is on Opensea. I am also on Foundation and Rarible. You can simply follow the links or click the image on my Website, choose which work you would like and make your purchase using your Ethereum Cryptocurrency or ETH. If you do not have Ethereum yet, you can purchase some on most crypto currency apps and transfer to your wallet.

As time goes on, and I continue to see the world and capture more visuals, I will put more of my work up as NTFs. You can view some of the ones I have available now here and feel free to support with a purchase knowing you are purchasing authentic work from the artist, a Photographer. If you would like to learn more about NFTs you can follow me on Twitter @ToniPayne

Much of this energy seems to be driven by price speculation. It’s also worth noting that the winner of the Beeple auction seems to be heavily invested in the success of crypto art. The cryptocurrencies that drive crypto art are often considered highly speculative.

Why the Hell Would Someone Pay $69M for a Link to a JPEG?

What does and doesn’t make sense about the crazy crypto art bubble.

Aaron Hertzmann, The Conversation

A s an academic researcher, developer of artistic technology and amateur artist, I was quite skeptical about crypto art when I first read about it several years ago.

However, I follow a community of artists on social media, and some of the artists there whom I respect, like Mario Klingemann and Jason Bailey, embraced and advocated for crypto art. Within the past few months, activity and prices seemed to snowball. I started thinking it deserves to be taken seriously.

Then the Beeple sale happened.

On March 11, Beeple, a computer science graduate whose real name is Mike Winkelmann, auctioned a piece of crypto art at Christie’s for $69 million.

The winning bidder is now named in a digital record that confers ownership. This record, called a nonfungible token, or NFT, is stored in a shared global database. This database is decentralized using blockchain, so that no single individual or company controls the database. As long as the specific blockchain survives in the world, anyone can read or access it, and no one can change it.

But “ownership” of crypto art confers no actual rights, other than being able to say that you own the work. You don’t own the copyright, you don’t get a physical print, and anyone can look at the image on the web. There is merely a record in a public database saying that you own the work—really, it says you own the work at a specific URL.

So why would anyone buy crypto art—let alone spend millions on what’s essentially a link to a JPEG file?

A detail shot from the Beeple that sold for $69 million.

Reuters

It might be helpful to think about crypto art in the context of why people buy original works of art.

Some people buy art for their homes, hoping to incorporate it into their living spaces for pleasure and inspiration.

But art also plays many important social roles. The art in your home communicates your interests and tastes. Artworks can spark conversation, whether they’re in museums or homes. People form communities around their passion for the arts, whether it’s through museums and galleries, or magazines and websites. Buying work supports the artists and the arts.

Then there are collectors. People get into collecting all sorts of things—model trains, commemorative plates, rare vinyl LPs, sports memorabilia—and, like other collectors, art collectors are passionate about trying to hunt down those rare pieces.

Perhaps the most visible form of art collecting today—and the one that drives so much public discussion about art—is the art purchased for millions of dollars, the pieces by Picasso and Damien Hirst traded by the ultrawealthy. This is still social: Whether they’re at Sotheby’s auctions or museum board dinners, wealthy art collectors mingle, meet and talk about who bought what.

Finally, I think many people buy art strictly as an investment, hoping that it will appreciate in value.

If you look at the reasons people buy art, only one of them—buying art for your home—has to do with the physical work.

Every other reason for buying art that I listed could apply to crypto art.

You can build your own virtual gallery online and share it with other people online. You can convey your tastes and interests through your virtual gallery and support artists by buying their work. You can participate in a community: Some crypto artists, who have felt excluded by the mainstream art world, say they have found more support in the crypto community and can now earn a living making art.

While Beeple’s big sale made headlines, most crypto art sales are much more affordable, in the tens or hundreds of dollars. This supports a much larger community than just a select few artists. And some resale values have gone up.

Aside from the visual pleasure of physical objects, nearly all the value art offers is, in some way, a social construct. This does not mean that art is interchangeable, or that the historical significance and technical skill of a Rembrandt is imaginary. It means that the value we place on these attributes is a choice.

When someone pays $90 million for a metal balloon animal made by Jeff Koons, it’s hard to believe that the work has that much “intrinsic” value. Even if the materials and craftsmanship are quite good, surely some of those millions are simply buying the right to say “I bought a Koons. And I spent a lot of money on it.” If you just want an artfully made metal balloon animal, there are cheaper ways to get one.

Conversely, the conceptual art tradition has long separated the object itself from the value of the work. Maurizio Cattelan sold a banana taped to a wall for six figures, twice; the value of the work was not in the banana or in the duct tape, nor in the way that the two were attached, but in the story and drama around the work. Again, the buyers weren’t really buying a banana, they were buying the right to say they “owned” this artwork.

Eva Marie Uzcategui/Reuters

Depending on your point of view, crypto art could be the ultimate manifestation of conceptual art’s separation of the work of art from any physical object. It is pure conceptual abstraction, applied to ownership.

On the other hand, crypto art could be seen as reducing art to the purest form of buying and selling for conspicuous consumption.

In Victor Pelevin’s satirical novel “Homo Zapiens,” the main character visits an art exhibition where only the names and sale prices of the works are shown. When he says he doesn’t understand—where are the paintings themselves? – it becomes clear that this isn’t the point. Buying and selling is more important than the art.

This story was satire. But crypto art takes this one step further. If the point of ownership is to be able to say you own the work, why bother with anything but a receipt?

It still seems hard to get used to the idea of spending money for nothing tangible.

Would anyone pay money for NFTs that say they “own” the Brooklyn Bridge or the whole of the Earth or the concept of love? People can create all the NFTs they want about anything, over and over again. I could make my own NFT claiming that I own the Mona Lisa, and record it to the blockchain, and no one could stop me.

But I think this misses the point.

In crypto art, there is an implicit contract that what you’re buying is unique. The artist makes only one of these tokens, and the one right you get when you buy crypto art is to say that you own that work. No one else can. Note, though, that this is not a legal right, nor is there any enforcement other than social mores. Nonetheless, the value comes from the artist creating scarcity.

This is the same thing that’s happened in the art world ever since photographers and printmakers had to figure out how to sell their work. In the world of photography, a limited-edition print is considered more valuable than an unlimited edition; the fewer prints in the edition, the more valuable they are. Knowing that you have one of a few prints personally made and signed by the artist gives you an emotional connection to the artist that a mass-produced print doesn’t.

This connection could be even weaker in digital art. But what you are buying is still, in part, a connection with the artist. Artists sometimes publicly tweet their thanks to their crypto art patrons, which may strengthen this emotional connection.

Personally, I want to buy only art I can hang on my walls, so I have no interest in buying crypto art. There are also environmental costs. Certain blockchains used for crypto art are really bad for the climate, because they require computations that consume staggering amounts of energy.

That said, if buying it right now gives you pleasure—and you enjoy sharing what you’ve bought and the community around it and you’re using a more environmentally friendly blockchain—that’s great.

If you’re buying it for some future reward, however, that’s risky. Will people care about your personal virtual gallery in the future? Will you care? Will crypto art even be a thing in a few years?

As an investment, it just seems inconceivable to me that the higher prices reflect true value, in the sense of these works having higher resale value in the long term. As in the traditional art world, there are a lot more works being sold than could ever possibly be considered significant in a generation’s time.

And, in the crypto world, we’re seeing highly volatile prices, a sudden frenzy of interest, and huge sums being paid for things that seem, on the surface, not to have the slightest bit of value at all, such as the $2.5 million bid to “own” Jack Dorsey’s first tweet or even the $1,000 bid on a photo of a cease-and-desist letter about NFTs.

Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey is trying to sell his first tweet as an NFT.

Anushree Fadnavis/Reuters

Much of this energy seems to be driven by price speculation. It’s also worth noting that the winner of the Beeple auction seems to be heavily invested in the success of crypto art. The cryptocurrencies that drive crypto art are often considered highly speculative.

I have no doubt that, right now, there’s a big NFT bubble.

There have been lots of bubbles before—tulips, baseball cards, Beanie Babies—objects that were flying off the shelves one year and then piled up in landfills the next. And, in a bubble, a few headline-making winners get rich, while a whole lot of others lose their shirts. Even if crypto art lasts, maybe the particular artist or platform where you’re buying won’t be popular in the future.

My feelings about crypto art aside, I do believe that art is, fundamentally, a social activity. The more our social lives are lived online, the more it may make sense for some people to have their art collections online, too—whether or not blockchain is involved.

Aaron Hertzmann is an affiliate faculty of computer science at the University of Washington

This is not the first NFT artwork that has seen such massive appreciation in pricing. An NFT artwork under the CryptoPunks series by Larva Labs, called CryptoPunk 1422, was bought some time in 2017 for $74. In October this year, the artwork resurfaced as an NFT, and was sold at around $2 million.

Three-year-old NFT surges over 20,000 times in value to sell for over $2.3 million

Three-year-old NFT surges over 20,000 times in value to sell for over https://assets.techcircle.in/uploads/article-image/2021/12/images/27674-nft.jpg.3 millionPhoto Credit: SuperRare

A non-fungible token (NFT) art piece by London-based crypto artist, who goes under the alias XCopy, has been recently sold for 550 ETH (Ether), or about $2.3 million (approx. Rs 17.4 crore). The latter was adjudged to have accounted for the top two NFT sales in the world between November 29 and December 5, with the two XCopy NFT artworks fetching a cumulative value of over $3.7 million (approx. Rs 27.9 crore).

Xcopy’s NFT pieces have incidentally reflected a massive surge in value. The animated image, titled ‘Some other a**hole’, was published under the ‘SuperRare’ NFT marketplace. The first sale of the artwork was listed at 0.8 ETH, fetching about $106 at an NFT auction in March 2019. The second sale of the animated artwork took place in November 2019, when it fetched 3 ETH, or about $483.

The recent sale, listed on Monday, December 6, fetched the appreciated price. The surge in its price accounts for an increase of over 20,000 times since the pricing of its first listing on NFT marketplaces.

This is not the first NFT artwork that has seen such massive appreciation in pricing. An NFT artwork under the CryptoPunks series by Larva Labs, called CryptoPunk 1422, was bought some time in 2017 for $74. In October this year, the artwork resurfaced as an NFT, and was sold at around $2 million.

So far, the highest price paid for an NFT is the digital artwork by artist Mike Winkelmann, aka Beeple, whose ‘Everydays: The First 5000 Days’ was sold at a whopping $69.3 million. It remains the most expensive NFT sold till date.

“If that’s the only reason you’re doing it, you’re probably not going to have a fun time,” Goltra warned. “You need to get something else out of it. There is the spirit of community among digital artists that you should enjoy,” he said. “It’s a new medium of art that traditional collectors can explore in,” Dizon added.

Tatler speaks to local pioneers, Colin Goltra and Gabby Dizon of Narra Art Gallery, who are introducing crypto art at Art Fair Philippines this week. We dig deeper into what this NFT craze is all about

Non-fungible tokens (NFTs) collectors and close friends Gabby Dizon and Colin Goltra launched Narra Art Gallery in late January 2021 to provide an open gallery space where they can showcase digital art available in the crypto art community. The gallery features five different floors that serve as exhibit spaces accessible in the open-world virtual realm or Metaverse. Easily accessible via web browser on a computer, it is located at the heart of Decentraland’s 100xArt District neighbourhood.

It is also named after the national tree of the Philippines. Narra Art Gallery aims to open the doors to the crypto art scene in the Philippines and showcase incredible local talents across the country, and possibly from abroad.

Being collectors themselves for a while now, Dizon and Goltra initially founded Narra Art Gallery simply to display their personal crypto art acquisitions publicly. (Decentraland is designed to provide people with the means to buy plots of land in the virtual realm and actively build something on it, much like in MMORPGs that we play). But the co-founders of Narra Gallery saw a big potential for it to grow more, especially now with the recent rise of digital art galleries like theirs and the sudden digitalisation of many traditional art galleries and museums due to the unprecedented repercussions of the global pandemic.

Displaying crypto art, collectibles, NFTs, and other virtual reality projects, Narra Art Gallery has been tapped by the Art Fair Philippines this month to play a huge part in this year’s edition. With an online talk with Dizon and Goltra as guests to help people understand the crypto basics and how to buy an NFT, as well as a meeting of artists and gallerists that are also active in the crypto art community, the NFT 101 Showcase plays a huge part in this year’s Art Fair PH.

So what exactly is this new technology that is sweeping the local and international art community by storm?

09 April 2021, Berlin: ILLUSTRATION - A digital artwork featuring Scooter frontman H.P. Baxxter is up for auction on a website. Scooter will be the first band in Germany to release digital, animated artwork to accompany the new Scooter album "God Save the Rave" starting April 9. The artwork will receive a certificate of authenticity using NFTs, Non-Fungible Tokens, which cannot be manipulated. The digital artworks are marketed to music fans and collectors by start-up twlvxtwlv. Photo: Jens Kalaene/dpa-Zentr

NFT is…

An NFT or a non-fungible token represents any digital file that you may put on it: may it be a video, photo, music, gif image, etc. In the crypto art community, NFTs represent art pieces that an artist creates. It exists on a blockchain, mostly in the Ethereum blockchain.

How can it be transferred to another owner?

Through this blockchain, people may trade NFTs for certain amounts of prices. Blockchain technology democratises, in a sense, the transactions being made for it lets the people in the community validate the transactions themselves.

Can it be copied?

By its name, NFTs are non-replaceable tokens. Although it may be replicated, only one person in the world can have an NFT of a certain digital file. This can be proven by checking the ledger of the NFT where data of recent transactions in the blockchain are stored permanently.

Can it be physically displayed?

When you buy it, you will have access to the high-resolution file that comes with the token. Using the digital art frame Canvia, Dizon uploads the works to it enabling him to display it physically in his house. Goltra added that part of what you are receiving from the NFT is the building of the relationship between you and the artists. In his case, the artist sends him prints of the digital artworks.

How to ensure its authenticity and good condition?

The artist validates the profile of the receiver of the NFT, making it unique and authenticated when transferred. The NFT has its own unique identifier, so even though other people can make copies of it, the original and certified version will remain with you. One of the solutions that blockchain technology provides is the assurance that NFTs are forgery-proof from other users.

A New Era of Art Appreciation

NFT CryptoArt display in art gallery with people using smart phones and digital tablets. Entrirely 3D generated image. Image on the walls is my own and it

Digital art has existed in the contemporary art scene since the dawn of the Computer Age. But never in its history has it reached such an overwhelming record-breaking sale until recently when Christie’s sold Beeple's work, Everydays: The First 5000 Days , last March 2021 for US$69 million.

Beeple’s artworks used to be sold at around US$60 thousand. But his large fan base, being one of the pioneer digital artists in the crypto art scene, led to his works being auctioned off at such astonishing prices. This is one key factor why crypto art is on the rise nowadays—value, as perceived by the society and its owner. The same philosophy goes with how traditional forms of art are appreciated. The only difference is that it is in the digital world.

Besides Beeple, there are other NFTs out there being sold at soaring prices: the first-ever tweet on the Internet by Twitter founder Jack Dorsey, Kings of Leon’s When You See Yourself music album, digital video collectibles of NBA Top Shot, and even a gif of an animated flying cat.

“The ones that have value are usually those that are historical as firsts and surely stand the test of time,” Dizon commented on why these NFTs are being sold for such high prices. “Beeple has been making Everydays for 13 years. It really has a good story behind the creative process and that artwork represented his life’s work for 13 years. Any piece of artwork, whether it’s worth a million dollars or a hundred, it’s only worth what someone is willing to pay for them,” he explained.

For Goltra and Dizon, introducing crypto art and collectibles in the Philippines is not about the money but more on adding a new way for Filipinos to appreciate digital art.

“It started with our desire to promote really good talents in the digital art scene from all over the world, particularly in the Philippines,” shared Dizon. “Through Narra Art Gallery, we are able to support the careers of artists that I have been following. When we bought plots of land in the 100xArt District, we decided that Narra Art Gallery will be a celebration of those artists we were supporting,” he continued.

Meanwhile, for Goltra, the relationships they’ve nurtured with the artists grew over time while he and Dizon have been doing crypto business for most of their adult life. “Crypto art is an extension of this, and it is created by people who are just ‘fresh blood’ in the scene. I could say that for me, it just came out naturally that we wanted to give these artists a space.”

Crypto art can be easily transferred online from one person to the next for a certain amount of cryptocurrency, enabling it to increase its value over time. One way to look at this trend is its great potential for wealth investment in the near future. But for the Narra Art Gallery co-founders, it is not here to replace traditional art nor pose as a better asset that would guarantee a higher return on investment.

“If that’s the only reason you’re doing it, you’re probably not going to have a fun time,” Goltra warned. “You need to get something else out of it. There is the spirit of community among digital artists that you should enjoy,” he said. “It’s a new medium of art that traditional collectors can explore in,” Dizon added.

What catapulted the crypto art industry to its rise today could be the shift of focus to arts and culture, according to Goltra. “We are in this interesting time where individuals have already made their fortune on Bitcoin and Ethereum, as well as other crypto assets, and now we come to a period where more people who want to be more deliberate about the cultural impact of our industry,” Goltra said.

“There’s always been a relationship between commerce and culture,” Dizon added. “If there’s a lot of money that’s been made in one industry, it usually supports some type of culture or art that represents that kind of era in time. It’s only natural that people who have made big money in cryptocurrency are also representing it by going into crypto art because it’s the representation of Internet history, of cryptocurrency as an industry as well.”

Digital art predates the prevalence of NFT in the crypto art community. With it now entering the Philippine market, there are only high hopes for it to flourish further. Dizon and Goltra acknowledged the rise of local talents who are minting their NFTs and most are off their radar. With this, one of the projects of the gallery is the firstmintfund.com wherein artists of any age and background, whether freelance or supported by a gallery, can be subsidised by Narra Art Gallery on their first minting of their works, which could be costly.

“We wanted to do that as a way for Southeast Asian artists to try their hand at crypto art but didn’t have the funds or the crypto to do so,” Dizon said. Artists interested in applying for this may submit their entries to the co-founders via the website and will be upon deliberation.

With the NFT 101 Showcase being one of the key portions of this year’s Art Fair Philippines, Dizon and Goltra are excited to take part, with the goal of spreading awareness in the art community of the existence of crypto art and NFT technologies. The co-founders will be hosting a series of panels and talks for audiences to understand it better and a highlight of crypto artists, not only from the Philippines but also around the world, using four floors of the Narra Art Gallery. The co-founders assured that this will not be the last of their projects this year to share the knowledge about crypto art.

“The Philippines has always had a tremendous number of artists but a lot of times, the art had been limited to commissions and client works,” Dizon said. “One of the things we’re seeing at crypto art is that artists are able to create art that they want to do in their own style and sell it in a global collector market depending on how the latter thinks it is worth. It represents freedom for a lot of artists because they are able to showcase their true skills without being dictated what to do.”

“A reason why crypto is so critical is because it is a technology that doesn’t care from where you are, who you are, and accessible globally,” Goltra said. “We are empowering artists to be professional artists. Crypto empowers people to take part in the global economy. We want to see more artists, either freelance or professional, or even a wannabe. Crypto is a levelling force with the best powerful means. We need to provide people access to this as we want Filipino artists to be the best not only in the Philippines but throughout the world.”

When talking about NFT coins to watch, it makes sense to look at the top NFT token in terms of market cap, so let’s do that. Axie Infinity (AXS) has grown exponentially over the course of 2021, going from being worth about Another thing to note is that the team behind Flow, Dapper Labs, were also the team responsible for CryptoKitties. This means that the network has some past history when it comes to NFTs, making FLOW an enticing cryptocurrency for fans of non fungible tokens. The crypto has done well this year, going from around $6.87 at the time of its January launch to stand at just over $12 on the afternoon 18 November..50 at the start of the year to being worth around $126 on the afternoon of 18 November. What’s the deal with AXS? Well, it is named after a game, made by Vietnamese studio Sky Mavis, which aims to teach people about the blockchain. Based on the Ethereum network, players get crypto rewards for playing the game, which was created by a group of people who met playing proto-NFT game CryptoKitties.

Further reading

A conceptualisation of NFTs

World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) logo displayed on a smartphone

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