Rick Wade is a Detroit artist who began his career as a traditional artist, but has since established himself as an NFT artist. His artwork combines traditional artistry with modern technologies such as AI.
Can you tell us a bit about your artistic career and how you came to create NFT art?
I started off as a traditional artist with realistic pencil drawings and comic book style artwork being my areas of specialty. In the early 2000’s I became really interested in 3D animation and modeling, securing work as a freelance forensic animator and character designer before joining the corporate world as an Instructional Systems Designer / Graphic Artist.
When did you decide to establish yourself as an artist and what type of artwork do you most enjoy creating?
I decided to establish myself as an NFT artist back in 2021. Initially as a way to supplement my income, but as I became more immersed in the world of NFTs, I became inspired by the sense of community and the level of creativity within the NFT world. I am a huge anime, science fiction, horror, action-adventure fantasy fan so I tend to create images and animations that contain influences from those interests.
Can you give us some insight into your creative process when creating NFT art?
I have no special process for creating “NFT” art. I simply create what I find enjoyable, then I decide if it is something that I could or should mint as an NFT. These days I have been fascinated with what is possible by using A.I. even going so far as to train my own models, and my most recent creations are mainly A.I. with touch-ups in Photoshop.
Can you share with us a special project or piece of art that inspired you or that you recently created?
This is the piece that was on display at the Mecenate Fine Art Gallery in Rome. It’s called “Noctiferī” which is Latin for Bringer of Night.
What challenges have you experienced so far as an NFT artist and how have you overcome them?
One of the biggest challenges I've faced is standing out in a sea of talented creators. To overcome this, I've focused on creating unique and high-quality artwork that draws attention and speaks to my personal style and interests. Additionally, I network with other artists and collectors, and actively engage with my community on social media, and explored various marketing channels to promote my work and increase my visibility.
How did you sell your first NFT artwork and how did you establish yourself in the NFT market?
It’s like the old saying goes, Consistency is key and content is king. I do my best to be present everyday online, posting artwork and NFTs several times throughout the day, and I received my first sale as a result of consistently showing up every day, exposing my art and posting in “shill” threads.
Can you tell us about your marketing strategy and how you interact with your community?
My marketing strategy involves building relationships with my community by regularly sharing updates on my work and engaging with them through social media, Discord, and other platforms. I prioritize building relationships with collectors and fans by responding to their messages and comments and engaging with their own content. I also collaborate with other artists and participate in group shows to expand my reach and connect with new audiences.
What role do collaborations and partnerships play in your NFT art career?
Collaborations and partnerships are essential to my NFT art career. Collaborations doesn’t necessarily mean creating artwork, it can also mean sharing ideas and strategies with peers. Working with other artists allows me to explore new creative avenues and gain exposure to new audiences. I've also partnered with collectors and galleries to showcase my work and expand my reach beyond the digital realm.
How do you find buyers/art collectors?
Finding buyers and collectors involves a mix of networking, social media marketing, and leveraging any exposure that comes with being featured on social media or NFT platforms.
How important is it to you to connect with the crypto community and how do you use that connection to spread the word about your art?
Connecting with the crypto community can play a big role in the success of any NFT artist. By engaging with the community, I can gain valuable insights into the latest trends and emerging technologies, stay up to date on news and events, and promote my work to a wider audience. Again, you have to be social.
How do you see the future of NFT art and what do you think will change in the future?
I believe the future of NFT art is bright, and I believe we'll continue to see a shift towards more immersive and interactive experiences. As blockchain technology evolves and becomes more accessible, we'll see new opportunities for artists to monetize their work and connect with audiences in new ways.
What is your goal or vision as an artist?
I’m a pretty simple guy. My goal as an artist is to continue bringing my visions to life by pushing the boundaries of what's possible with AI and other emerging technologies. I want to create artwork that not only captivates and inspires but also challenges our understanding of what art can be.
What advice would you give to newcomers to the Space or new NFT artists?
To newcomers to the space or new NFT artists, my advice would be to stay true to your style and interests, focus on creating high-quality work, and actively engage with the community. Building relationships and networking with other artists and collectors is key to success in this space. Also, don't be afraid to experiment and try new things, and always be open to learning and growing as an artist.