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The Easy Guide to Buying NFTs

Table of Contents 

1. Foundational Crypto Education

2. Foundational NFT Education 

3. "Has there been any success in digital art & NFTs?"

4. How to get set up in crypto for NFTs in just four steps

5. How to buy/collect NFTs?

6. Why are NFTs valuable?

7. "What the Fuck do I even do with an NFT?"

8. Appendix A: Marketplaces, Artists/Projects, Influencers, Media Publishers, NFT Tools, Discord Servers

9. Appendix B: Safety, Security, & Known Scams

1.Foundational Crypto Education 

What is Blockchain?

  • Blockchain is a decentralized and public digital ledger that records any transaction information in an anonymous and immutable way. 
  • Blockchains act as a network for cryptocurrencies allowing transparent, secured and anonymous peer-to-peer exchange of value at scale. [8]

What is Cryptocurrency?

  • Cryptocurrency is a digital currency allowing peer-to-peer transactions on a blockchain. [7]

What is Ethereum?

  • Ethereum is a blockchain, and Ether (ETH) is the cryptocurrency used to make transactions on the Ethereum blockchain. [1] 
  • Gas fees are the cost to transact on the Ethereum blockchain which are determined by supply/demand across the network and measured in GWEI a unit of measuring ETH. [1]
  • Public and Private Key Addresses: unique identifiers that serve as a virtual location for your cryptocurrencies, similar to a routing and bank account number. 
  • Your “public key” allows you to send and receive. You can have one or multiple public keys associated with every private key. [10], [11]
  • Your “private key” unlocks the right for its owner to access and spend the associated cryptocurrencies. Always Keep your private Key a secret. [2]

2.Foundational NFT Education 

What are NFTs?

  • Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs) are unique, digital items with blockchain-managed ownership. Examples of NFTs include digital art, collectibles, virtual reality items, crypto domain names, ownership records for physical assets, and more. [1]

NFT Marketplaces

  • NFT Marketplaces are like the Amazon or Etsy of buying, selling, and trading NFTs. Some are open for everyone, some are exclusively curated, and others are run by collectives.  

Where is the NFT Community & how to get involved?

  • You can find the NFT communities mostly on Twitter and Discord, though also on Reddit.
  • You can also partner and communicate with artists who understand the space, finding them on social platforms and by searching through marketplaces. [3]
  • See Appendix A

3."Has there been any success in digital art & NFTs?"

The Market 

  • For the First Half of 2021 NFT Sales Volumes Hit $2.5 Billion [13],
  • In August 2021 NFT Sales Volumes Hit $3.4 billion on Opensea marketplace alone. [15]

Bluechip NFTs

  • One of first NFT projects is a set of randomly generated pixel-based avatars. Some of the rarest, most desirable CryptoPunks have sold for millions of dollars
  • 2021 demand skyrocketed for these provably scarce digital collectibles responsible for more than $1.18 billion in total trading volume, as of September 1, 2021 with auctions at Christie’s and Sotheby’s. The most expensive CryptoPunk sold to date (9/1/2021) went for $11.8 million. [14]
  • is by far the biggest player in the generative art space, encompasses a wide array of individual drops by various artists, spanning a diverse swath of artwork styles and approaches—and nearly all of it is surging lately
  • Art Blocks saw $583 million worth of trading volume in August alone as collectors created a feeding frenzy around new drops and paid top dollar for secondary market pieces. 
  • A single Art Blocks NFT from Dmitri Cherniak’s Ringers collection sold for $5.66 million worth of ETH in late August and earlier that same week, a piece from Tyler Hobbs’ Fidenza project went for $3.3 million worth of ETH. [17]
  • A set of 10,000 NFTs featuring digital apes. The average price on July 6th 2021 was $3,600—up 1,574% from its launch price of $215 in April 2021 and as of September 2nd is now 25 ETH ($80,000). [13]. A single Bored Ape NFT sold for $2.25 million worth of ETH, with the collection shifting more than $400 million of total volume to date, per CryptoSlam. 
  • A collection of 107 Bored Ape NFTs up for auction at Sotheby's, sold for $24.393 Million in September 2021.
  • On August 28th Bored Ape Yacht Club raised $96 million in a single hour though an NFT drop of 10,000 Mutant Apes 
  • Bored Apes are the fifth-most successful crypto-collectible project of all time. According to data from CryptoSlam, the apes have generated $354 million in sales. [21]
  • XCOPY is a London based crypto artist that has been a part of the crypto art community from the start. His continued success on various crypto art platforms has led to him becoming a legendary figure in the space.
  • Recent sales as of September 9th ranging from $10,000 - $220,000 with a weekly sales volume of $421,000. [22]
  • For more
  • See Appendix A

4.How to get set up in crypto for NFTs in just 4 steps

What is a Crypto Wallet? 

  • Basics of setting up crypto wallet [18]
  • A crypto wallet is an application or hardware device that allows individuals to buy, sell, store, and spend your cryptocurrency funds. [1] [6]
  • Crypto wallets safeguard the private keys to your cryptocurrency funds that are stored on a blockchain. [6]
  • Wallet addresses or Public Keys are the unique addresses people will use when they are sending crypto or NFTs to your crypto wallet. [1]
  • Secret recovery phrase is a list of words that can be used to recover your crypto should you forget your password or lose access to your wallet. [1]

Set up your MetaMask Non-custodial Crypto Wallet

  • Adding cryptocurrencies such as ETH to your MetaMask Wallet allows you to interact, invest, trade, sell, and own crypto and NFTs. [2]
  • You can buy Ethereum using any of the major exchanges (like Coinbase) or with a debit card or Apple Pay directly within MetaMask by clicking “Add funds”. [2] 

Install & Set Up MetaMask Account + Browser Extension

  1. Go to MetaMask.io /download select Chrome (Chrome is known to have issues with crypto application) or Brave (Industry suggested browser) for desktop. [2]
  2. Select “Create a Wallet.”
  3. Create a username and password.
  4. Pay close attention to your uniquely assigned Secret Recovery Phrase, and store it somewhere safe.
  5. Confirm the phrase by placing all of the words in the correct order as they were assigned when prompted.
  6. Now, MetaMask is set up and should appear in your browser extensions.

What is a Crypto Exchange?

  • A cryptocurrency exchange allows you to buy or sell cryptocurrencies like bitcoin or ethereum from USD, EURO or other fiat currencies via bank transfer, credit card or PayPal for example. [18], [19]
  • Coinbase Exchange: makes buying and selling cryptocurrencies very easy with strong security and transparent pricing. [18]
  • Crypto Price Tracking tools like Coingecko provides a fundamental analysis of the crypto market tracking price, volume and market capitalization helping you understand the value of your crypto.

Set up your Coinbase Exchange Account 

  1. Select Ethereum 
  2. Place ETH buy order 
  3. Now you have ETH!
  • Transfer ETH from CoinBase to Metamask [22]
  1. Open up the MetaMask browser extension. Click on “Account” and copy your Ethereum address. [22]
  2. Now head back to www.coinbase.com, select “Portfolio,” and find “Ethereum.” Click “Send,” and paste in your Ethereum wallet address from MetaMask in the “To” field. Double-check that you pasted in the full 42-character wallet address, if you send crypto to the wrong address you will not be able to get it back. Click “Continue,” then “Confirm” to send your ETH, it should take a few minutes to transfer. [22]
  3. Now you are ready to start buying, selling, and trading NFTs

5.How to buy/collect NFTs?

What is a ‘Mint’?

  • To mint an NFT or the minting of an NFT is the process of adding an NFT to the blockchain in exchange for crypto currency.  [23]

How to mint directly from a Project or Artist? [Primary Market]

  • Go directly to the project or artist's minting website (once the art goes on sale). 
  • Connect your Wallet/Metamask to the website
  • Click the “mint” button on the website and approve the transaction. 
  • You can search etherscan, using your wallet address, to verify the transaction is on the blockchain and to see the art associated with your wallet. 

How to mint/buy from an NFT Marketplace? [Secondary Market]

  • Enter one of the NFT Marketplaces. See Appendix A
  • Connect your Wallet/Metamask to the website
  • Find the piece you want to purchase, select the purchase button, and approve the transaction. 
  • You can search etherscan, using your wallet address, to verify the transaction is on the blockchain and to see the art associated with your wallet. 

Researching best practices

When educating yourself on NFTs there are a few rules of thumb that will help you understand the value of what you are researching: creativity above all, process, innovation, communications, time value. 

Creative first. 

  • Do you like it? Why do you like it? Creativity above everything.

What is the creative process? 

  • Code, smart contract, rendering, file types, size, data storage, messaging, format. All aspects should be considered.

Is there innovation in the creative and creative process?

  • Is it distinctly unique in the way it's created, the code and/or smart contract is written, or in its file type, format, size, storage, and messaging?
  • What is the level of onchainness?

Do you resonate with the communication strategy?

  • Do you find the discord, website, and twitter pages useful, fun, and engaging? 
  • Does the messaging and community feel strong and positive?

Four "Whats"

  • What was the NFTs worth in the past?
  • What was the Artist’s other work worth in the past?
  • What is it worth today?
  • What could it be worth in the future?

See Appendix A for Tracking, Rarity, Value, and Release tools.

6.Why are NFTs valuable? 

The best way to accurately value an NFT is to weigh the reigning market conditions against that NFT’s fundamental financial and objective elements. What are its parts? How is it built? What can it do? What is the value over time?[25]

Provable digital scarcity via blockchain. A digital economy centered around creators. Redefining value and shaping the new digital economy, as the foundation for the Metaverse. Together the three biggest potential value metrics for the NFT industry. 

“NFTs are more than just art; they are actually an emerging method of storing and sharing value, Pedro Febrero, an analyst at crypto-focused analytics outfit Quantum Economics, told Decrypt. “In our opinion, NFTs are an interesting way to collect and share value. Not only for digital art pieces and collections but also because you can essentially create non-fungibility with digital assets. This enables all sorts of incentive mechanics where projects can award contributors with unique items,” said Febrero.”

Objective Value

  • Rarity: How rare are the NFTs traits?
  • Scarcity: How many exist proveably via blockchain?
  • Utility: What does it do?
  • Ownership Rights: What can you do with it commercially?

Financial Value 

  • Past, present, and future value: Is and will it continue to be worth something financially?
  • Community consensus value: Is it popular or does it have the potential to be culturally significant.

7."What the Fuck do I even do with an NFT?"

Have fun with it, share it, display it, trade it! Do what feels good, you are officially a collector of wealth in the form of art. Which historically was a means only available to the ultra rich. Now everyone has the chance to buy an Ape, at mint, in june of 2021 for $218. Within four months have a stored value of at least $100,000 (as of 10/2021)

Physical Display

Digital Display

  • Social Media
  • Websites 
  • Digital Galleries / Metaverse

Experiential Display

  • Large scale LED panels 
  • Projection Mapping
  • Physical Prints collections
  • Digital Display collections

8.Appendix A:  NFT Resources

  1. Marketplaces
  2. Artists/Projects 
  3. Influencers
  4. Media Publishers
  5. NFT Tools
  6. Discord Servers

1.Market Place List

  • Async Art — Platform and marketplace for interactive, dynamic NFTs.
  • Artblocks.io - Curated Generative art collections.
  • Ephimera — NFT marketplace custom-tailored for photographs and video art.
  • Foundation — Web3 platform for the “creative economy.”
  • Fractional— Platform for facilitating fractionalized NFT markets. 
  • KnownOrigin — Digital art marketplace.
  • MakersPlace— Another respected digital art marketplace. 
  • Mintable— Community-controlled NFT marketplace. 
  • Mintbase— NFT marketplace that’s focused on the NEAR Protocol now but still has a legacy Ethereum platform. 
  • Nameless— Upcoming NFT storefront platform. 
  • NIFTEX— NFT fractionalization platform and marketplace. 
  • nft20— Liquidity protocol offering pools of floor-level NFTs.
  • NFTfi— Marketplace for NFT-collateralized loans. 
  • NFTX— Decentralized NFT marketplace underpinned by a bespoke liquidity protocol. 
  • Nifty Gateway — NFT marketplace that just opened up its platform to external NFTs. 
  • Nifty’s— Social NFT network that just launched its own native marketplace. 
  • ntent.art - Curated Sustainable & inclusive NFT platform featuring select projects from the ntent.art collective.
  • OpenSea — The cryptoeconomy’s leading NFT marketplace.
  • Rarible — Another one of the ecosystem’s most popular NFT marketplaces. 
  • SuperRare — Leading cryptoart marketplace, in the process of decentralizing via $RARE
  • Throne - Digital assets for the next generation of creators and collectors. Built efficiently with Ethereum.
  • Unicly — A platform for fractionalizing NFTs and trading NFT fractions.
  • Universe— Upcoming NFT marketplace and creative suite. 
  • Zora — Protocol for permissionless, on-chain NFT marketplaces.

2. Artists/Projects 

Traditional Artist in the NFT

Unique Projects

Notable Artists 

3.Influencers 

4.Media Publishers 

5.NFT Tools

6. Discord Servers

Multi-project, general NFT server

Larva Labs

ntent.art

Artblocks.io 

NFT artist-specific server

XCOPYART 

FvckRendervers 

Project-based server

Mooncats

Blitmap

Axie Infinity

VeeFriends 

SoRare 

NBA Top Shot 

BAYC

9.Appendix B: Safety, Security, & Known Scams

Cryptocurrencies and blockchains offer many benefits but it’s important to do your research on how to safely store funds and digital items before you dive in. The crypto and NFTs in your wallet are your responsibility. Never share your password or seed phrase with anyone.

Never give your Secret Recovery Phrase or your private key(s) to anyone or any site, unless you want them to have full control over your funds. Only use MetaMask on a personal device. 

More information coming soon.

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