Hold on to your horses, folks, because NFT project mania is back into full swing. Perhaps driven by reduced ETH exchange fees, lower gas prices, many new entrants into NFT collectibles, or just all the media around crypto as of late, NFT projects are booming. The latest project to drop is ZENFT, a project that sells procedurally generated AR & VR Bonsai trees.
Watch the NFT Culture Team discuss this project here:
The project consists of 8888 procedurally generated, unique trees that were distributed at a flat .08 ETH. Each tree grants the owner membership into the Zenft Garden Society, a club that presumably offers ongoing rewards to hodlers. One cool aspect of ownership of your Bonsai, is that you actually own it. The artwork comes a with a grant of full commercial rights. In addition to membership in the club, and the above perks, 8% of all proceeds are promised to be donated to a philanthropic cause: Via Campesina. This added nicety is a neat perk to owning one of the trees.
The Garden Society admin excitedly announced the rapid sellout via discord:
The sellout of 8888 trees occurred in less than an hour after launch. Many people made multiple purchases, as the low cost of entry and low gas fees, along with the visually attractive artwork, led people to hoard the pieces.
In the future, the Garden Society has teased an “Eternal Garden” project, as well as an ERC-20 token called $Water that enables enhancements to existing NFTs. NFT Culture staff is very excited to see how this project progresses and is received by the larger community.
Takashi Murakami delays NFT launch.
According to HypeBeast Murakami is delaying his newly minted NFTs as he tries to better understand the Non-Fungible Token technologies. Earlier this week, the artist stated the following on his instagram:
I have to make an announcement here. I was about to take on a challenge of offering NFTs, digital artworks that use electronic certification mechanism, for sale. For the following reasons, however I have decided to postpone and reexamine the sales.
Initially, I took the challenge on with a spirit of trial first, groping my way forward from the preparation of the NFT artwork to entering into an NFT marketplace. I believe my team and I managed to prepare everything very quickly. On the other hand, we have been receiving many a valuable opinion and advice from a number of collectors and experts, which have led me and my team to further discuss and deepen our awareness.
In order to take full advantage of NFT and maximize the convenience for the collectors/owners while strengthening their satisfaction and sense of security in owning the works, we decided that it would be best to further explore the optimal format in which to offer my NFT works. To this end, we plan to carefully consider and discuss various factors such as: choosing between ERC721 and 1155 based on their advantages and disadvantages considering the concept of my work; whether we need independent smart contracts; whether we should build our own storefront; and whether we need IPFS; among others.
I would therefore like to withdraw the listing for the time being and tackle NFT again after further internal discussions, better prepared. I sincerely apologize to those who have already put in their bids, but I hope you will understand the logic behind this withdrawal, the aim of which is to later allow you to enjoy my NFT works more conveniently and with peace of mind.
Through the preparations and discussions so far, I have become even more convinced of the great potential of NFT, and I am excited anew to work on NFT digital art. I thank you for coming along with me on this journey.
Original Article from 3/30/21 Below.
Takashi Murakami Delivers on his NFT Promise
You heard it from NFTCulture first. Earlier this month we speculated that a Takashi Murakami NFT would be imminent. Given his affinity to technology, a younger fanbase, and growing collector set, Takashi had to create NFTs at some point. We are extremely excited for this drop.
Takashipom appears to have made the jump in amazing fashion with pixelated re-imagining of his Takashi flowers each with different facial expressions. Currently, there appear to be 12 individual Murakami.Flowers NFTs available and while they are not yet available for auction. NFT Collectors have already put the bidding floor above 5 ETH and the most interesting have already reached nearly 15 ETH.
Murakami is quoted on OpenSea
In the short decades before an artist’s death, they have to create works that manage to remain relevant for hundreds of years thereafter. In that line of thinking, I am starting this experiment because it amounts to digging down into the nature of art within the realm of VR that are recognizable as such, and further diffusing it. Is this merely a slight fluctuation of interest? Or is this the first step towards future values that we don’t yet begin to understand?
He continues to highlight the project stating that the work is based on his signature flowers each with 24 x 24 pixel art evoking nostalgia for Famicom (NES), prepared in 108 variations, the number that signifies earthly desires in Buddhism.
Note: in the time to write the article and publish it, a new offer jumped the price to 14 ETH.
What makes the Takashi Murakami NFT Drop so interesting?
We view artists, especially those who have been successful in the non-digital realm with increased scrutiny. Many of these artists just mail it in with their minimum effort expecting a massive payday. Takashi appears to have been thoughtful in his approach by doing 3 things:
Highly Recognizable NFT
Takashi could have just posted the exact same flowers he created in the past. Instead he took his highly recognizable vision, created a unique spin, and now we have something new.
Unique Variations on each NFT
Instead of doing an open edition or a 100/100 drop of the same pieces, each NFT is similar, yet unique in their fascial expressions. We may see color variants and more as the drop progresses, but the point is that each drop is thoughtfully planned in a way that makes it a compelling collectable. Takashi Discord imminent.
The art is great. As we stated before, he could have mailed it in, but he didnt. Each pixel art piece is designed with intention to allow room for expression while maintaining the simlicity he wanted to derive from the famicon days. He also muted the colors within the palette to make it just unique enough to be something entirely new.
Hats off to you Takashi Murakami. We will try our best to collect one as soon as they are available, but we expect the price floor to jump to at least 55 ETH as an entry point into the collection. Which would put the initial drop at over $10m in USD.
It’s worth noting that none are available for sale at this time.
Final thoughts on the Takashi Drop:
In our opinion, this drop MAY not get as popular as beeple or others, but will be one of the most significant drops over time as one of the worlds most famous artists tests the space with a piece of art that has the 3 key features we previously mentioned.
NFTCulture Status: BUY AND HODL
As the story develops we will share more buy updating this article or creating new updates if the variations become meaningful enough. For now you can follow the progress on twitter.
We have also reached out to the Takashi Murakami team for comment, but don’t expect a response at this time.
Hashmasks are NFTs created in a very large art series with common design and traits, that can be viewed as a single living work as a whole, as well as 16,384 individual pieces of art. The work was created by over 70 artists apparently, and contains multiple gamification layers.
Hashmasks are available for sale on opensea: https://opensea.io/collection/hashmasks
Layer 1 – Character traits, which consists of Character, Eye Color, Mask, Item and Skin Color
Layer 2 – the name of the hashmask.
Some data people have created a google doc that allows you to filter the hashmasks by trait and rarity, that lives here: Google Drive — All Hashmasks – Ranked
One cool thing, is that you can figure out traits you like, and more or less customize your own by finding the exact hashmask that corresponds to the traits that you like. Not all combos are represented though.
Our take: Hashmasks are quite pricey at the moment due to the newness of the concept. We expect the initial hype will keep prices high in the near term, but 16,000 units is a lot of inventory, and we expect that gradually the prices will come down quite a bit, especially on the less-rare traits. Longer term though, we expect the unique aspect to the work will preserve and create quite a bit of value for the NFTs. Where there is a lot of room for growth is if any interesting or highly compelling meta-aspect to the art becomes public, in which case the Hashmasks involved will certainly take off.
NFT Culture Rating: HOLD
A tutorial on creating your first NFT Art
NFTCulture was created on the idea that artists can use these amazing technologies to create incredible collections and interact directly with the community of collectors and fans without the need for middlemen and women. We want to highlight the very best of this industry and make NFT art as accessible as possible to anyone who’s interested. We hope this guide can be a resource for those looking to create their first pieces of art.
Crypto Art isn’t for everyone
Art is about passion, being inspired, and inspiring others. Art isn’t easy and having access to tools doesn’t guarantee success. I’ve seen NFT artists enjoy massive success with open-source tools and just as many artists with access to expensive rigs and programs who can’t even give away their art. Just because you can make something, doesn’t mean you should spend the time, energy, and resources to put it online. In this guide, we hope to provide the nuance required to not only get your cryptoart minted, but also help you realize what you need to do to be successful. Just because you’ve created it, doesn’t mean someone will be willing to buy it.
That being said, we’re always looking for the next great artist to feature on our podcast. We’re currently interviewing artists that are dipping their toes into NFT creation and would love to hear from you.
NFT Art Oversaturation?
The market is already becoming incredibly saturated. One of the best aspects of NFT and crypto art is that the artists have more control over the community than ever before. As artists are successful, they can now invest in other art and artists and self-govern the community. This is an exciting phenomena that will likely result in better art being created and distributed than ever before.
From an outsiders perspective, creating NFTs appears incredibly tedious and complex, this is half true. There are a number of steps that artists need to go through (and we will cover in this series) but once the steps are complete, it becomes a simple process to mint new art and make it available online. It becomes important to start understanding the nuances of individual marketplaces in detail to understand opportunities.
There are a variety of marketplaces available for artists to choose from. Some of these marketplaces are open to everyone, while others are incredibly exclusive (in some cases may be over exclusive). There are also a variety of in between options through a variety of artist verification steps, etc. The point is that all artists now have access to platforms to promote and publish their work on the blockchain. The challenge is that the signal-to-noise ratio becomes hard to decipher for collectors who are looking for up and coming artists as opposed to imposters trying to make a quick buck. This is not to demean any artist who genuinely has a passion and wants to use this medium to promote their work. We will be covering some tips on how to grow in this community later.
The Fact is that artists who’ve either been successful in other mediums or artists who have always had a strong presence and participated in the art communities are more likely to see immediate success. This is actually fantastic. If you’re a new artist that doesn’t have a big social following don’t give up. Keep hustling. Keep participating in the community. Participate in conversations. Encourage your peers. Try new ideas. Grow.
You don’t always get what you want
We see a lot of amazing artists who are applying to marketplaces like KnownOrigin, SuperRare and Nifty Gateway and sharing their frustration with getting rejected. This frustration is truly understandable, but it’s not the end. Don’t let an initial rejection let you down. We’ve seen many instances where artists have initially applied for one of these and get rejected but eventually make it onto these platforms. Stick with it. Prove them wrong. In some instances it may have nothing to do with the quality of the art. People make mistakes, there could be other issues on their end, or you just haven’t built your reputation enough in the community as of yet. Don’t give up. Keep on grinding. We see plenty of artists who are still incredibly successful on Rarible, Opensea and others.
Getting started creating your first NFT Art
The first step is deciding which platform you want to start with. Some of the most common platforms include Opensea, Mintable, and Rarible. (Curators note: Don’t create more than one collection of each piece of art and don’t put the same art on other marketplaces. This will diminish your brand quicker than anything. )
In today’s scenario we will be using Rarible, but any of them are great for starters.
Once you’ve selected your preferred NFT platform or marketplace it’s time to connect your wallet.
Connecting Your Wallet
What is a Crypto Wallet?
Wallets are used to send, receive, and store digital assets like Ether and other cryptocurrencies. Wallets come in many forms. They are either built into your browser, a web app you download or an app on your phone or tablet. Whatever wallet you choose, you should be very familiar with all the available options and must constantly keep this in mind.
If you already have a wallet, awesome! Great work. Many crypto artists already have currency on exchanges like Gemini and Coinbase. Platforms often don’t connect directly to the marketplaces we need to create our art. The good news is that you can easily transfer ETH between your wallets.
Signing into Rarible
The most common Wallets for Rarible are metamask.io and fortimatic. Both are great options with their own benefits and challenges. Note: If you want to use metamask, you will need to install the chrome extension ahead of time.
Once your wallet is active, you will have access to the platform, but you likely won’t have funds. To add funds you need to complete the following steps. (We will be using fortmatic in this example)
Steps in Rarible
From here you have 2 Options. QR Code for ETH or ERC-20 Token to be sent to that wallet or Buy crypto by attaching Coinbase or Portis to the account. For the rest of the example we will be transferring from Coinbase
Copy the address below the QR code presented on the screen
Steps in Coinbase
- Now go back into coinbase and click Send / Receive. Click the ‘To’ Field and paste the address you copied.
- Click Pay with and change from BTC to ETH
- Add a note so you know what you were doing.
- Hit continue.
- This process can take a while, so go grab coffee.
- Once confirmed, you will be able to finally create your NFT in Rarible.
Note: Rarible charges a small fee when creating your art and there will also be a gas fee from the Ethereum network. This is important to consider when creating your art and how much you want to charge for your initial pieces. Rarible allows your to lower your price at a later date, but not increase it. Additionally, charging more for your art upfront will require higher initial fees upon minting.
Minting your first NFT Art
When you’re ready to start, it’s as easy as clicking the create button. From there you will be presented with two options, Single and Multiple. Single is designed for one of a kind pieces, and Multiple is for collectables that may be in a series. Artists often create variations of themed releases that may contain both single pieces as well as multiples at a lower price, allowing collectors more access to their work.
What you need to create your first NFT:
- The file you want use (PNG, GIF, MP4, Etc.) Max 30mb.
- Name for the piece of art
- Description of the art
- A thumbnail (gifs work if animated movies) of the art. (This is often overlooked and can slow down your process, so have it ready.)
You will also have to make a few key decisions at this time including:
- Do you put the art on sale immediately?
- What instant sale price do you want to select
- If content will be unlocked after purchased?
- Any Royalties that you want to take for resale. (For starters, it’s recommended to take lower royalties on items. 5% or less)
Check for mistakes before creating the item. You can’t undo a lot of this.
From there there will be 3 steps that can take anywhere from 30 seconds to a few minutes. All you have to do is follow the onscreen instructions.
- Mint Token
- Sign Sell Order
- Sign Lock Order
Congratulations, you’ve created your first piece of NFT art.
Depending on ETH Network congestion, your NFT may not show up immediately in your account, but there should be a box on your account page (it just may not have anything in it). Be patient, it may take as long as an hour or two to come through, but it’s there.
Now you’re ready to get started marketing your NFT art and participating in the amazing community of cryptoart.
We are always looking for exciting artists to come on our podcast and discuss their inspirations, passions, and what excites them most about the NFT and Crypto art space. If you’re interested in coming on our podcast, please reach out below.
Featured NFT Crypto Artist
Jose Delbo is an Argentinian born artist who published my first work at the age of only 16. I was inspired by the American cowboy westerns, moved to the States and began work on classics like Billy the Kid, Judge Colt and the Lone Ranger. Then in the 70’s, I brought a host of television shows to comic book form with titles such as the The Twilight Zone, The Brady Bunch, Hogan’s Heroes, Buck Rogers, The Monkees and the Mod Squad.