An Interview with WVM, Audio-Visual NFT Artist
This up-and-coming musician, artist and producer talks the value of music, the future of audio-visual NFTs, and how seven is equal to three!
Over the past few weeks, we’ve seen an increase in the number of audio-visual NFTs hitting the blockchain. The artist we’re speaking to this week was one of the first to put his music onto WAX – WVM.
With a wealth of experience in a variety of different genres, as well as a distinctive creative flair, WVM is one of the hidden gems of the WAX NFT scene, and has an incredible amount of promise ahead of him.
I’ve followed WVM’s work for some time, and after a short break from the NFT space, he’s coming back with a bang. He provides some intriguing opinions here, so I hope you enjoy reading this as much as I did putting it together!
Be sure to read to the end of the interview for our WVM Interview Card and a special audio-visual collab, dropping tomorrow!
Pssst… I’ve also hidden three claim links to previous Interview Cards within this interview. Good luck finding them!
Hydro: Thanks for agreeing to chat! Could you tell me a bit about yourself, your background and how you got into NFTs?
WVM: I’m a musician and artist – I’ve been known under a number of different monikers, but have settled on WVM. As far as my background in music, I’ve experimented with pretty much every genre out there. This includes classical, electronic, rock, metal… everything apart from country. As an artist, I’ve sold paintings in the past, but only recently did I make it a priority to paint more regularly. Now, it’s just a matter of making time for everything.
I have been in NFTs for quite a while, and a supporter of WAX since the very beginning. I was there before the bubble of late 2017, and I remember when I first heard of WAX late December that year. It’s amazing to have seen this community grow! When the opportunity came about to release NFTs as an independent artist on WAX, I jumped at the opportunity – I’m focused on being as creative, innovative and expressive as possible in this space.
What made you come up with the idea to mix your music with an NFT collection?
Well, music is still a relatively new concept with NFTs. People are still trying to wrap their heads around NFTs in general. They are used to getting their music for nothing, or thinking of digital art as memes – free bits of code to use and dispose of as you want. But I see NFTs as a genuine revolution. It’s giving value to what most people have seen as valueless for a long time.
NFTs can be applied to so much more than just art and music, but within those fields, it will utterly transform everything. Just like you don’t want a knock-off Gucci shirt, you want the real thing, perception to music NFTs will shift in the same way.
People will see the value not in having copies, but in having the real thing. I believe some will look at music NFTs in the same way they look at vinyl. Taking it further, music NFTs in the future could be comparable to original paintings from an artist – it’s a complete and utter shift in thought patterns and paradigms.
Music has value, and it’s about time we remembered that in our value-centric society. Perhaps there will be apps or software in the future that can display animated visual art as you listen to your tracks.
I think my work is unique as I combine my music with my own sketches. For example, this NFT, which pairs a classical piano piece with a sketch of a dancer. I’m working on a number of new NFTs in the same vein, which will incorporate paintings, amongst other things.
It’s interesting to see the wider public reaction to NFTs at the moment – some are dismissing it as a fad, whilst others see it as the future.
NFTs are in no way a fad. The way I see it, they are basically enhanced cryptocurrencies. Bitcoin is essentially just a database when you break it down, whilst NFTs are enhanced with an additional asset in the form of art or music.
This is very important, if you think about it – why is it whenever we see or read about Bitcoin in any article, they always incorporate the picture of a gold coin with the Bitcoin logo? Because it’s a powerful image that gives the impression of value.
This is 100% intentional. If they wanted to portray Bitcoin as it really is, most people would not care. What, a bunch of blocks in a network? A picture of a database? Of course, tech-minded folk would be interested because of the revolutionary technology, but that powerful image of a gold coin makes it sexy to the wider public, who otherwise might not even care.
The point is, when the blockchain is enhanced with an image, sound or other asset, it gains more value.
Some misunderstand the nature of NFTs because they are unaware of the benefits of blockchain technology, and it’s ability to create unique, verifiable, authentic works of art and music.
Furthermore, there is a definite emotional attachment to NFTs that is lacking in crypto. If you want to sell your crypto on an exchange for profit, you wouldn’t think twice about it most times. Who cares… profit made, most people move on. But with NFTs, because of the image or sound, there is an emotional attachment. I know I would have issues with selling some of my cherished NFTs at any price.
Just to add, there is an important lesson to learn in hodling. Hold your assets for a while. Think about Laszlo Hanyecz, who bought two pizzas with 10,000 BTC in the early days – that would be worth millions today.
That’s why I keep increasing the price on some of my NFTs. I’m not thinking of the price today, I’m thinking of the price years from now, or the price I believe think they’re worth, or what I’m prepared to accept for them.
The gold coin analogy is fantastic – Bitcoin, at least in a pictoral sense, has been portrayed pretty favourably in the media in that regard.
NFTs, at least to me, appear to have made art and artists far more accessible to the everyday public. What are your thoughts on this, and do you think we’re on the brink of a wider shift on how we perceive and value creativity?
Absolutely, 100%. I think digital representations of music and art will take on a more prominent and important role, especially through AR and VR capacities, than what we know currently.
I fervently believe NFTs will open doors for artists and musicians in ways never before possible. It has already done so for me, allowing me to reach new fans, and I will certainly continue to walk the NFT path.
The irony in all of this is that the digital realm, which one took value away from music through torrents and peer-to-peer networks, may now make music and art more valuable through NFTs and blockchain technology. Digital music may become more valuable than it’s physical counterparts ever could. Mint #1 NFT albums, from particular artists, could sell for millions – what vinyl album could match that?
As the digital realm reaches a deified status as we continue to use it more and more in our daily lives, its value will only increase – so yes, I believe this is indeed the beginning of a much bigger shift in how we perceive and value creativity.
Who, or what, inspires your music?
I love 80s music – David Bowie and Prince being two of my favourites. I also take inspiration from 80s cinema, and 70s horror and sci-fi movies.
More recently, I take a lot of inspiration from video games, and shows such as The Mandalorian and The Bad Batch.
Was it the natural choice to utilise WAX/AtomicHub for your work after your initial exposure to the platform, or did you explore other options? Why did you decide to go with WAX?
WAX is by far the best blockchain to release NFTs – no gas fees, a vibrant and strong community, a very strong marketplace, and the people at WAX are just cool as hell. I love this community.
Who are your favourite NFT artists at the moment – both music-based and otherwise? Are there any collections that you’re following in particular?
The majority of my NFTs are game and collection-based ones, such as Atari, Street Fighter, Garbage Pail Kids, The Horrors, Monsters of Rap and Cartoombs. Of course, I also like Beeple, and I admire Rory McQueen‘s work. Saying this, I am sure popular artists such as Banksy will enter the space, as well as others from the traditional art world.
Honestly, I’d like to become my own favourite artist – I mean, that’s what we all strive for, right? As an artist you want to create something you enjoy, so yeah, I will strive to become my own favourite in music, art, NFTs, whatever.
Good answer! It’ll be interesting to see if/when artists such as Banksy decide to enter the NFT space. Are there any artists you would like to collaborate with?
Yeah definitely, too many to mention! I’ve just released a new NFT showcasing an as yet to be released song, Intergalactic, featuring animated art from Macaulay Etherington from UltraRare. You can find the drop here.
I’m fairly certain many artists from the traditional art world will experiment with NFTs. I think the NFT space is so early in its evolution – it feels like we are now where Bitcoin was in 2011. There are so many changes happening at such a rapid pace – and I’m sure some changes will come about that none of us will see coming.
Where do you see your work 12 months from now?
Excellent question, no one ever asks that.
I’ve had to overcome a lot in my life. I was distracted for a long time, but this past year, with the lockdowns, have enabled me to focus on myself and my life and put my energy into getting to the point of freedom, freedom to do what I want. I’m not quite there yet, but I am extremely focused on making the best music and art I can, and developing my reality through my artistic endeavours. I feel more focused now than I ever have done in my life.
I have to admit, the events of the past year have helped in a lot of ways, because they forced me to look inside. What I want is to grow. Grow as a person, as an artist, as a musician – and never stop learning.
Where I see my work 12 months from now is exactly where I see my work 12 months from now. No one can accomplish anything without faith – it’s the seed of thought in your mind that everything else springs from.
What about WAX itself – where do you think WAX will be a year from now? With Funko’s impending arrival to WAX, do you think the influx of new collectors will influence the price of $WAXP?
That’s a tough one. I can tell you a theory I have – although this is not financial advice in any capacity, of course.
I feel like Bitcoin was a gateway for what is happening now, but as a technology, it’s already antiquated. There are much better options that have proven themselves throughout the years, so my theory is Bitcoin has run its course, and hit its peak a few months ago, at the $60k+ mark.
If BTC hits the 20k mark, I see a decoupling with the good alts – the alts that have some very valid and powerful benefits to offer.
One of these is WAX. Why people still want to buy and sell NFTs on ETH is beyond me – WAX is better in every capacity, and, in my opinion, has a massive future. I can see WAX going higher than it’s previous ATH, maybe within 12 months. I think this summer is going to be a spectacular time for alts!
To wrap up, let’s have some quick-fire questions:
Tea, coffee, or something else?
Coffee – sometimes way too much coffee! – but I like tea as well
Summer or winter?
Crypto or fiat?
One unusual fact about you?
I am a huge Star Wars nut.
You can invite 3 people, dead or alive, to dinner. Who do you choose?
Jean-Michel Basquiat, Mike Tyson, Albert Einstein… 3 isn’t enough! Add Marylin Monroe and Salvador Dali… oh, and not forgetting David Bowie and Prince of course!
That’s an eclectic mix of personalities! How can we follow you and your work?
WVM has a lot of faith both in his own work, and in the future of audio-visual NFTs. Should he continue on this path, I have no doubt that he’ll have a lot of success in both the NFT and the music space!
As is tradition, we have two NFTs up for grabs to mark the interview – our WVM Interview Card, and an interesting audio-visual collab!
The Magnetic Maestro
Max mint: 250 (1 reserved, 200 public, 20 for promo holders, 30 for OG Backers)
Drop price: 25 WAX
Dropping 26/06 22:00 UTC (public), 22:05 UTC (OG), 22:10 UTC (promo)
50% of the proceeds will be donated to WVM to help fund his art!