What is an NFT?
Essentially an NFT is a digital marker on the blockchain which represents ownership of a digital object. The blockchain is a virtual ledger hosted by a network of computers which contains authentications of all transactions – the primary use of blockchains is essentially the backbone of cryptocurrencies – the virtual ledger of transactions and exchanges of cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin.
Linking items/products to this blockchain allows owners to verify the authenticity, even to the extent of detailed information of each owner and transaction timestamp. Offering these detailed exchanges on the blockchain allows only secure and verified purchases without the assistance from a third party.
Where will you see NFTs pop up?
This is where NFTs influence has been highlighted on national and international news headlines the most, with one of the highest auction prices of a jaw dropping US$91.8 million being completed for the work entitled Merge by artist Pak! This essentially paved the way for new and existing artists to sit up and take notice of NFTs.
Art has always long been established with artists and groups which set out their boundaries which makes it hard for new and upcoming artists to break into. NFTs has allowed these new and upcoming artists to break into the established confines of the art world, therefore opening new doors for new, and unknown artists that are redefining/genre breaking.
NFTs has already started to blur the boundaries of physical and virtual art, with galleries such as ‘The Shoreditch NFT Gallery’ starting to pop-up displaying NFTs side-by-side with existing art.
NFT Art has now being recognised within the art community and even long-established artists have now started to launch NFT campaigns, using them to introduce their art to new emerging consumers.
NFTs and games are also getting popular, this has initially consisted of digital assets, skins, characters, weapons, virtual lands and much more. The players can claim exclusive ownership rights to these assets and can choose to distribute or sell them on therefore being play-to-earn.
Digital assets within games have also gained interest of bigger brands; some introducing new digital products solely for the digital verse including digital cosmetics.
Whilst art and games have digital ownership of a digital item music is somewhat different; music is combined with digital art to create unique pieces of artwork. This digital piece can consist of an exclusive album art and include details like traditional album booklets with files such as lyrics, notes, credits.
The NFT is essentially a token that shows the ownership of the asset through a digital transaction of the files.
Live Nation; the Live music event organiser has announced that fans will receive NFTs when they purchase a concert ticket the ‘Live Stubs’ product will bring back the nostalgia of collecting ticket stubs whilst giving artists a new way of connecting with their fans. Over time ‘Live Stubs’ will show the authenticity of the collectable.
Creating an exclusive membership using NFTs would allow members only exclusive physical and virtual access to events/launches, therefore allowing the creator/artists full control of who and what is available to their fans.
Looking to the future of NFTs
Nike has patented a system called ‘CryptoKicks’ that would use NFTs to verify the authenticity of your physical sneakers and it would also consist of a virtual version (NFT) of the shoe which would be included as a part of your purchase. This allows collectors to ‘show off’ their prized possessions in both the physical and virtual worlds, maybe potentially on your very own metaverse avatar.
Scab Shop are a collective of globally recognised tattoo artists, who have collaborated to create a novel way of pushing the boundaries of tattoo into art and NFTs. Tattoo artists have always been paid by the hour, their work remaining on one person’s skin, unable to be sold or traded, and dying with the person whose skin it was applied to.
The owner of each NFT has the choice of getting the tattoo themselves or hold the NFT to sell or trade until the tattoo is applied. After the application of the tattoo, the NFT still exists forever and can be held, traded, or sold. For the first time in history, people can pass their tattoos down for generations after them with the original artist responsibly getting the credit.
There is an unfathomable potential for the future of NFTs and its uses, including what creatives such as us can do with them to push the boundaries creating delightful and inspiring projects with rigor and flair.