The Future of NFT Arts: Why Artists are Still Excited About NFTs

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Lauren McDonagh-Pereira

Lauren McDonagh-Pereira

Lauren McDonagh-Pereira is a photographer from Massachusetts, USA. She captures the beauty of the world around her, favoring Nikon cameras and lenses. She is drawn to shooting landscapes, wildlife, flowers, and people enjoying time together.

The Future of NFT Arts: Why Artists are Still Excited About NFTs

Ten Reasons Artists are Here for the Future of Non-Fungible Tokens

By Lauren McDonagh-Pereira

The Future of NFT Art

Artists are excited about the future of NFTs and selling their art as digital collectibles. In this post, I will explore some of the reasons for the excitement about NFT art and NFT photography. 

I’m Lauren McDonagh-Pereira (@lampphotography). I am a photographer, NFT artist, and NFT collector. I have spent the last year immersing myself in the NFT art community, learning as much as I can about the intersection of blockchain technology and the modern art market. I started this blog to explore the topics that have me so excited about NFTs and their future applications. 

As I write this article, the NFT market is in a quiet period. Sales have slowed, the hype has dulled, and artists have to work much harder to market their work than they did a year ago. And yet, artists are still passionately creating NFT art. Read on to find out why. 

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Disclaimer

 

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ⓒ Lauren McDonagh-Pereira Photography 2013

Before we get into it, please consider a few quick DISCLAIMERS.

  • I am not a financial advisor, an art expert, a lawyer, or an accountant. Always do your own research before purchasing NFTs and never spend money that you cannot afford to spend. 
  • This post represents my personal opinions and is NOT financial advice.
  • I am an NFT artist. At the time of posting, I have works minted on the Tezos and Ethereum blockchains. Links contained in this article may point to my own minted NFTs or may point to the NFTs of other artists that I have collected from. If you choose to collect NFTs referenced in this article, I may earn money from your purchase.

What is an NFT

An NFT is a digital file that has been minted (uploaded to) a blockchain network. NFTs have value because they carry a unique digital signature that proves that they are “THE FILE” no matter how many times they are transferred between different users. In theory, an NFT holder will be able to prove that their digital art piece was created and uploaded by the original artist 20, 50, or 100 years from now. 

It sounds complicated, but it’s really just a new way to think about digital goods. (See: Why Would Anyone Spend Real Money on an NFTs for more information on this topic).

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© Lauren McDonagh-Pereira Photography

How is the NFT Market at the end of 2022

I am writing this article in November of 2022. The cryptocurrency markets have crashed, and then crashed again. Sales of NFTs on popular platforms, such as OpenSea, have slowed dramatically compared to 2021 levels. The public discourse is that NFTs are dead.

Still, thousands of serious, professional artists are creating, minting, and promoting their artwork as NFTs every day. Why?

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1.) The NFT Community is Open to Newcomers

On Twitter, I posed a question to my followers, “Why are you still excited about NFT art? What keeps you grinding in November 2022?

A screenshot of a tweet from Twitter
© Lauren McDonagh-Pereira Photograph

Inna Ivonova (@Lisittsa_Inna), a traditional portrait artist, responded: “I’ve only been here two months. I love what I do. I like that there are so many artists here. Nowhere in real life is there such a concentration of artistic energy. I love you NFT people”

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The NFT art community at the end of 2022 is a magical place. Artists have built strong social networks on Twitter and Discord. Artists regularly gather to chat and discuss thoughts, strategies, and art in community driven Twitter spaces

Community members value open information sharing. They have an ethos of global cooperation.  And there is a strong belief that everyone has something of value to offer. A huge reason for this culture of support and good vibes, is how open the NFT art community is to newcomers. 

Artists of all levels of experience with art, the NFT market, and cryptocurrencies are welcomed with open arms. I am in some direct message groups on Twitter that contain award-winning photographers with decades of professional experience, college students who are just learning how to market their art, and retirees who are having fun learning how to turn their creative ideas into AI-illustrations. They are all given respect and space to participate in the conversation. 

The NFT art community does not care where a person is on their journey as an artist. Of course, skilled and experienced artists command a higher price for their NFT pieces, but new artists, or people who are just new to the NFT space, are welcomed and offered helpful tips from more knowledgeable community members. 

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2.) The NFT Community is Fun

In response to my Tweet asking artists why they were still excited about NFTs, visual artist, Jackied.tez (@artbyjackied) said, “It’s the fun part of the day…if I get to it. The creating, minting and shopping ♡”

A screenshot of a Tweet
Tweet by Jackied.tez

 

Artists are having tons of fun in the NFT community. Over the last year, I have made many strong new friendships (link to NFT spotlights). I even got to spend a wonderful week with a friend that I met through this space when I traveled to Europe for a family wedding in September!

NFT artists gather in Twitter Spaces daily. We chat about the latest news in the space and we trade tips for creating, marketing, and selling art. Most importantly, we have a lot of fun. Within regular Twitter space communities, there are long running inside jokes and community memes. Artists who met each other because of NFTs have become genuine friends and lean on each other for support and encouragement. 

For the last 10 months, I have woken up every day, and logged in to Twitter  to check my group direct messages, see what my friends have posted, and to hop into the Flare community’s daily Twitter space at 8 am EST. The NFT art community is a wonderful way to make friends with like-minded artists from all over the world. In my experience, people are friendly, highly engaged, and happy to discuss a range of topics related to NFTs and art. 

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© Lauren McDonagh-Pereira Photography

3.) Artists feel like their art is being appreciated

Photographer and digital artist, Lightyshut (@lightyshut) likes that her art is appreciated in the NFT community. She wrote, “…nowhere except NFT put such value to art and artist! At least in our country, artist won’t a have a promising future, but here we can make our brands! And make art limitlessly…” 

Screen Shot of a Tweet
Tweet by @LightyShut

It’s a great feeling to share your art with people who actually appreciate the effort involved. Before the NFT space, I would share my photography on Facebook and Instagram. I would often get a like or a nice comment from a coworker, and that felt nice. But, in the NFT art world, I am sharing my photography with other photographers and professional artists who appreciate my art aesthetically AND appreciate the effort I had to devote to develop the skills needed to create it. There is just something extra satisfying to have that “Wow! Beautiful!” come from someone who truly understands that I had to stand out in the freezing cold for hours and use expensive hard-won gear to get that shot. 

The artists and creators in the NFT space in November 2022 are committed. The people who were into NFTs to make a quick buck have disappeared and left motivated artists behind. This is great for the NFT community! The people that I am connecting with on social media genuinely enjoy art, and are excited about developing the NFT art market for the future. I know when I post a new piece of art, that all my likes, comments, and shares are coming from people who value my art work, and value my contributions to the space as a creator. 

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© Lauren McDonagh-Pereira Photography

4.) NFTs are Another Way for Artists to Share Their Work

Katherine Swampmaid (@swampmaid), fine artist, believes that NFTs are a great way to share her art with the world. In response to my tweet, she said, “Twitter has been (the) easiest platform to gain attention even (if) you start from 0. And in (the) nft space its even faster, the sales are a huge bonus and theres by far more chances to get paid for smth here than on any other place (without being a very well known artist prior)” 

Screenshot of a Tweet
Tweet by @SwampMaid

Many NFT artists feel truly seen for the first time in the NFT community. Because the space is so welcoming and invested in promoting one another, artists jumping into the space are able to grow their social media presence relatively quickly on Twitter as compared to other platforms. The community is heavily invested in art and artists, so the audience viewing your work is uniquely interested in original artistic content.

For example, photography has been my main hobby for almost 20 years. I made a Facebook page in 2016. Today, I have 151 followers.

Screenshot of Facebook followers
Lauren McDonagh-Pereira Photography Facebook

I created my official photography Instagram in 2016. Today, I have 880 followers.

Screenshot of an Instagram account
Lauren McDonagh-Pereira Instagram

In stark contrast to this, I dusted off my Twitter profile in February 2022 (9 months ago). I had also created that page in 2016, but I only had made 6 Tweets and had 33 followers who were mostly my friends. Today, after 9 months of being active in the NFT Twitter community, I have over 12,300 followers!

Screenshot of Twitter bio
Twitter Bio of Lauren McDonagh-Pereira Photography

The main difference between my extremely slow growth on Facebook and Instagram, compared to my lightning fast growth on Twitter is that Twitter is where the NFT community is! The people spending time on Twitter for NFT art are an invested audience. They want to see my work, and comment on it, and share it, and find out how I created it! In my experience, minting an art piece as an NFT, and then sharing it with the NFT community on social media is the best and fastest way to have your art seen and appreciated. 

5.) NFTs are the Best Way to Showcase Unique Digital Art

For some styles of art, NFTs are the best way to showcase and sell art pieces. NFTs have provided these artists with a way to sell their art that simply does not exist in traditional art markets.

Stefanie Neal (@stefanienealart) is a digital artist and musician who blends photography, animation, and music in her uniquely wonderful digital pieces. In response to my Tweet asking artists why they are excited about NFTs in November 2022, she wrote, “NFT’s are really the only way I can package up everything I do into one piece. So I’m here to stay”. 

Screen Shot of a Tweet
Tweet by Stephanie Neal

 

Digital artists, who work with animation and audio, love NFTs because they are able to share and sell their art as GIFs and video files. Art that cannot be presented as a physical item is difficult to sell in galleries. With NFTs, the expectation is that the art will be delivered digitally, making them the perfect medium for animated and audio art.

6.) Artists Believe that NFTs Will Create Strong Revenue Streams

Artists are excited about NFTs because they have the potential to become a strong part of our revenue streams. 

Franz Graf (@FranzGrafHiking) said that he is excited about NFTs because “It was the first time ever someone was willing to PAY for my work. I wouldn’t have believed that before”

Screenshot of a Tweet
Tweet by Franz Graf

When we sell art through galleries, the galleries take a majority cut. When we sell our photography on stock websites, the websites keep most of the profits and give us pennies. With NFTs, artists market and sell directly to their collectors. The NFT platforms take a small cut, usually under 5 or 10% of the sale. This is a much lower rate than artists usually have to pay to land a sale.

Artists are also able to form direct connections with their collectors in the NFT art community. With more traditional art sales, the artist never meets the person who appreciates and collects their work, and has no way to follow up with that person after an initial sale. With NFT art, most artists and collectors connect over social media, so the collector can see when the artist drops new work, and artists can reach out to previous collectors with sneak previews or early access to their NFT drops. 

In addition to these benefits, NFTs offer long term royalties to artists (See: Why Would Anyone Spend Real Money on an NFTs for more). If a collector sells an artists’ work, the artist’s crypto wallet will receive a predetermined percentage of that secondary sale automatically. This frees artists up to focus on selling the work they have today, at the prices they can earn today, without worrying too much about how much their prices will increase in the future because they will still benefit financially from the sale of older pieces. 

A Canadian and American $5 bill laid out with a 5 euro bill.

7.) Unlocking New Avenues in Video Games and Virtual Worlds

The emergence of NFTs has opened up innovative ways for artists to integrate their digital artwork into video games and virtual worlds. In recent years, the gaming industry has seen a surge in the use of unique digital assets, allowing players to own exclusive items within games. Artists are now exploring these new possibilities, creating digital tokens and trading cards that can be used within these virtual environments. This integration not only offers new revenue streams but also allows artists to reach new audiences who are deeply engaged in the digital realm.

8.) Bridging the Gap Between Digital and Physical Art

NFTs are revolutionizing the way artists think about their creative process, blurring the lines between digital creations and physical pieces. With platforms like Nifty Gateway, artists can offer a hybrid experience where the purchase of a digital token can also include ownership of a physical artwork. This innovative approach is leveling the playing field, allowing digital artists to gain recognition and value for their work akin to traditional art world practices, such as auctions and gallery showings. It’s a significant shift that’s bringing digital art into the same prestigious realm as physical artwork.

9.) Enhancing Direct Connection with Potential Buyers

NFT marketplaces and digital platforms have created a direct connection between artists and potential buyers, bypassing traditional art dealers and auction houses. This direct engagement not only empowers artists to have more control over the sale and pricing of their work but also allows them to build a community around their art. For instance, artists like Trevor Jones and digital artist Beeple (Mike Winkelmann) have leveraged this to create a significant impact, reaching wider audiences and establishing a direct dialogue with their followers. This new dynamic is reshaping the artist-collector relationship, offering more transparency and engagement.

10.) Addressing Environmental Concerns with New Technology

Initially, the environmental impact of NFTs, particularly concerning energy consumption and carbon footprint associated with proof of work blockchain systems, raised concerns. However, in response, there has been a significant push towards more sustainable practices. Artists and platforms are increasingly adopting eco-friendly blockchain technologies and smart contracts that reduce carbon emissions. This shift not only addresses environmental issues but also opens up new avenues for artists to support environmental causes through their work. The use of NFTs in the music industry and other creative fields is also evolving to incorporate these environmental considerations, ensuring that artistic expression in the digital world aligns with a commitment to sustainability.

Conclusion

There are lots of wonderful reasons for artists to love the NFT art community. The NFT community is welcoming and fun. The community appreciates and amplies art. And NFTs offer a new way for artists to present and monetize their work. The market might be cold right now, but our hearts are still warm and filled with excitement for what the next few months and years will bring.

Are you an NFT artist? What has your experience been? Are you still excited about NFTs?

Let me know in the comments section!

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MEET Lauren McDonagh-Pereira

Lauren McDonagh-Pereira is a photographer from Massachusetts, USA. She captures the beauty of the world around her, favoring Nikon cameras and lenses. She is drawn to shooting landscapes, wildlife, nature, and people authentically enjoying life.