Welcome to the KiwiNFT interview, our new special column where we showcase both emerging and established artists. Today we have a very special guest, a great NFT artist and Senior designer. Ladies and gentlemens, greet Waxbones.
Waxbones is a brilliant NFT artist and Senior graphic desgner based in Bristol, UK. By day he design information and wayfinding systems for cities, by night he expel creative juices under the alias, Waxbones.
In this interview, he shares how and why he got in NFTs, where he finds inspirations for doing art, his impressions of the NFT space and its future, and many other interesting things.
I’m a full-time Graphic Designer by day but have always drawn weird and wonderful things for fun. I discovered NFTs back in January 2021 through a friend of mine, Gavin Strange (aka Jamfactory). Gav was releasing a physical print that came with an edition of one of his NFT pieces and I really liked it, so I asked him and he then sent me some information about what NFTs are and how to get involved.
2. Why did you decide to join the NFT party?
It seems like an excuse to create more personal work that isn’t driven by a client’s vision. I had tried a few endeavors with my personal work, including printed record player slip mats, but I just didn’t have the exposure to make it work. Through this conversation with Gav, the guys over at Known Origin checked out my work and contacted me directly about joining the platform. They were (and still are) incredibly supportive of my work, promoting me and helping me to get on board.
3. What is inspiring you?
My work is heavily inspired by punk music, tattoo culture, and old 30s-style cartoons. Someone once described it as “juxtaposing the macabre with the whimsical”. I also like to play on themes of mental health as something that I have had to deal with and I think everyone does to some extent. And of course, just seeing all the incredible work being created in the crypto-art space is so exciting and driving me to keep pushing myself.
4. What is the major difference between CryptoArt and all the other art?
Other than the obvious response about the technology itself, I think the biggest difference is that making it in traditional art is a goal that very few reach. Governments don’t see arts and creative subjects as ‘real jobs’ which is why the finding is so often cut. But in crypto art, we’re building a community of artists whose voices haven’t been heard yet. It’s a world where you can create whatever you want, and someone who relates to that art will eventually find it.
5. What makes an artist successful in the CryptoArt scene?
I have no idea! “Success” is, however, an artist defines it. For me that means being able to go full-time into NFTs, knowing that I will be able to give my family the financial security and life that they deserve. I have been very fortunate in that people have resonated with my work enough to collect pieces and ask me to collaborate with them, which to me means I'm on the right path.
6. Who are your favorite artists in the NFT space?
There are so many artists doing really interesting things right now. I think the work that GLOWA is doing with audio and visuals is stunning. The Savage Droids and Woodies projects are doing something really interesting with some of the best artists in the space. I think the artists working on 3D collectibles are incredible, KidEight of course, Shakkablood, and Engwind is super underrated. Of course, if you’re following me you’ll know how much I love Numan. There are so many, I could go on forever.
7. What is the future of NFTs?
In the immediate future, I think (and hope) we’re going to see fewer low-effort and knock-off 10k PFP projects make room for the ones that feel unique, high-quality, and hold more gamification and utility aspects, really making use of the technology. I’ve been asked to do art for quite a few projects now and every time I say no it’s because it’s nothing new. It’s boring to me. More and more people are going to be entering the space in the next 12 months, artists and collectors, and it’s going to be really interesting to see how that affects both the quality of work we’re seeing and the engagement with ‘OG’ artists.
8. Give please one piece of advice for artists who are only starting with NFTs?
I’ll give a few: _Engage with the community. Tell an artist you love their work without the caveat of asking them to look at your work. Be part of the wider conversations _Do work for you. If your work isn’t selling immediately, don’t change what you’re doing to match what you think is trendy at the moment. Trends come and go, stick to your guns! _Don’t randomly shill in people’s DMs who you don’t know. I get it all the time and I’ve made a point of saying if this happens from strangers with no prior introduction, I won’t buy from the project/artist. Which is painful if I really like the art, but that’s my personal views.
9. Where can collectors buy your work or know more about it?