What is an NFT?
NFTs are non-fungible tokens. The adjective “non-fungible” is often used in economics to represent characteristics such as uniqueness and non-interchangeability. In the crypto space, non-fungibility simply indicates that one item cannot be exchanged for another.
A “token” as a unit of account is essentially a certificate of validity stored on the decentralized blockchain, making digital assets traceable and accessible to everyone. As a result, NFTs are a one-of-a-kind virtual currency that can belong to virtually any category and typically takes the form of paintings, videos, music, collectibles in video games, or any other type of creative digital production.
Since NFTs exploded in early 2021, everyone is now buying and selling these tokens around the world. But, how can someone convert real art into NFT and how can they sell it? Is it difficult? Is coding necessary to make an NFT?
In a nutshell, the steps are quite simple. To understand the main procedure and its specifics, read this quick guide below.
What is crypto art?
Art is the most common use case for NFTs, and it’s no wonder that crypto art in the form of NFTs has exploded in popularity recently. The fact that new blockchain technology is creating conditions that now allow artists to earn tens of millions of dollars from their digital paintings has attracted many creatives who could only dream of such a level of ease and accessibility before. .
Sensational and highly publicized NFT auctions related to digital art have received considerable public attention. The most expensive sales made headlines by bringing in millions. In 2022, the most expensive NFT with a price tag of $91.8 million was “Merge” by pseudonymous digital artist Pak.
In 2021, Everydays: the First 5000 Days NFT collection by artist Mike Winkelmann, known as Beeple, was another very expensive auction and sold for $69.3 million.
Crypto art is associated with unique works of art created by well-known artists and auctioned on marketplaces that include not only popular NFT platforms but also traditional auction houses like Sotheby’s and Christie’s . Yet, the majority of art in the crypto space is created by unknown talented newbies.
However, some NFT collections, including the pioneering one named CryptoPunks or the most hyped recently named Bored Ape Yacht Club, are examples of generative art. This type of art is usually created using various stand-alone systems. Images in these popular collections are created by assembling a selection of simple image components in different combinations.
Related: How to assess the value of an NFT?
How to turn your art into NFT?
If you’ve ever wondered if you should convert your art to NFT, the answer is obviously “yes, why not give it a try”. The process of creating an NFT is not complex, expensive, or technical. All it takes is a set of creative skills and a personal computer.
Again, it should be noted that NFTs can potentially convert not only images, but also songs, videos, GIFs, and other digital items. So, first of all, you have to choose an artistic field that suits you best. Based on this, you will understand what skill set you will need to become a real NFT creator.
For example, as a graphic designer, you will need to use graphic editing tools such as Adobe Illustrator, Adobe Photoshop, MS Paint, CorelDraw, etc. You can also try alternative methods such as three-dimensional (3D) modeling which is known to be more difficult for beginners. If you choose 3D animation, you will need to use 3D modeling tools such as Blender or Cinema 4D to design animated graphics and characters which will then be converted to NFT.
After that, you will need to come up with a unique idea for your unique piece of art or perhaps an entire collection and think about what content it will eventually turn into.
Is coding necessary for NFTs?
It is quite easy to create an NFT from digital art without coding. The creation process is called typing. It basically involves publishing a single instance of the token on the blockchain. NFTs are minted once created, similar to how metal coins are created and put into circulation.
After this procedure, the digital artwork becomes secure and tamper-proof, as well as difficult to handle. Since this digital item became an NFT, it can now be bought, sold, and tracked digitally when resold or retrieved.
For artists, integrating NFTs into digital art is the new way to fairly monetize their work. On most NFT marketplaces, artists can program a royalty clause upon minting so that secondary sales of their works generate passive income for them. If the demand for the artwork increases, becomes famous and increases in value, the artists can benefit.
Minting is an automated process provided on most NFT marketplaces. To start it, you will have to follow some simple steps mentioned below:
Nevertheless, you can try to code an NFT yourself if you are already experienced in this field and want to become an NFT developer. To dive deep into NFT programming, you should keep in mind that the Ethereum network still has a monopoly on developing NFTs.
Choosing the NFT marketplace to make and sell your NFTs
An essential part of the NFT minting process is choosing an appropriate NFT platform. The right choice depends on various factors such as supported file format, crypto wallet matching, platform accessibility for users and a price for minting an NFT, or transaction fee, which is a payment made to offset the computing energy required to process and validate transactions.
There are a bunch of different online NFT markets in the crypto space and each one works slightly differently. The main thing for artists is to know if the platform is organized or if it is based on self-service and to choose the one that suits them best, the visit and the user-friendliness.
Self-service or unorganized NFT platforms provide free access to all artists. In order to upload NFTs to them, you just need to register through a crypto wallet and pay the transaction fee to mint an NFT. The most popular are mass self-service NFT marketplaces like OpenSea and Rarible.
Organized NFT platforms are more selective about artists. To sign up and start hitting your art on these platforms, you will need to submit an application with full details about the NFT collection and your previous art experience.
Another visible disadvantage of organized NFT marketplaces is the long waiting period before the experts decide. Due to these rigorous selection criteria, however, most of the top digital artworks are exhibited on these platforms so that buyers have more confidence in the artists who collaborate with these platforms. Well-known curated platforms are SuperRare and Nifty Gateway, to name a few.
Related: The NFT market: how to buy and sell non-fungible tokens
Setting up a cryptocurrency wallet
A cryptocurrency wallet is a tool you will need to access NFT platforms, sign transactions and manage your balances.
Before setting it up, the most important thing is to make sure that the wallet matches the cryptocurrency used on the NFT platform you intend to use. Since most NFT markets are based on Ethereum, they accept Ethereum’s native Ethereum (ETH) cryptocurrency as a means of payment. Therefore, it is necessary to have a crypto wallet with some ETH at hand.
There are many crypto wallets with millions of users already. Many of them have diverse functionality and some of them have their own mobile apps and browser extensions for easy access to blockchain-based platforms.
Choosing an appropriate cryptocurrency wallet depends on what kind of security you are willing to have. The main types of them include custodial, non-custodial and hardware wallets. A custodial wallet is also known as a hosted wallet because users’ funds are automatically stored there by a third party, similar to how banks keep money in checking and savings accounts.
It is considered the most user-friendly and easy to configure. A non-custodial wallet gives users full control over the security of their crypto and does not depend on a third party to safeguard the funds. A hardware wallet, also known as a cold wallet, is a physical device that can keep users’ crypto offline and secure even in the worst case when someone’s computer is hacked.
How to sell digital art as NFT
The NFT sell is likely to be the end point of your NFT minting. Most NFT platforms have a feature to choose a sell method or an option to set a price for your NFT when minting it.
Fixed price selling and auctions are currently the two main ways to sell NFTs. A fixed price sale is considered the easiest, fairly transparent and direct way. To sell your freshly minted NFT in this way, all you have to do is specify the price at which you want to sell it. Some platforms also ask to set a royalty percentage, the amount you will receive in case of future sales of your art, so pay attention to that as well.
Another way to sell your NFT is to hold an auction so buyers can browse and bid on your digital art. Some auctions may be online only, while others may end in a full-fledged live auction. There are generally two types.
The first type is an English auction, an ascending price auction where the highest bid wins at the end. A timed auction is a specific form of English auction where an NFT can be bid on over a set period of time and in the end the collector who submitted the highest bid wins. The second type is a Dutch auction, a descending price auction in which the price drops until someone buys your NFT.
It is up to you to choose the NFT selling mode. Each way has its advantages and disadvantages, whether it’s a possible lack of understanding of the real value of your work when setting up a fixed price or a dependence on time during sales. at auction.