Florida artists trade paint brush for computer mouse with new technologies

Non-fungible tokens, or NFTs, allow artists to spread their work over the web

NFTs are a new technology that allow artists to 'go digital' in monetizing their work.

Florida artists are trading in their paint brushes for a computer mouse as they explore a new technology that lets them spread their art to a wider audience.

Juliana Anca picked up a paintbrush after seeing her sister do the same, and she never looked back.

Anca, a Romanian native who now lives in Orlando, specializes in large scale pieces for her clients.

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“In my opinion, art is meant to be seen,” she told News 6. “[Art owners] should have the opportunity to see that any point in time.”

That is, in part, why Anca is interested in a new digital technology that would allow access to art at any time.

But Anca would have to trade her paint brushes for a computer mouse, since digital art can be appreciated by anyone with an internet connection.

“Seeing artwork on the computer, it is just a different concept for me,” she said. “I am still trying to grasp the value of it.”

The tech? It’s called non-fungible tokens, or NFTs.

“An NFT is a digital image that cannot be duplicated because it has, attached to it, a certificate of authenticity,” said Samuel Armes, the founder of the Florida Blockchain Business Association.

“For some people, it might be difficult to understand the value of a non-fungible token, but what if that image was your digital driver’s license?... Something that could never be copied or duplicated or, more importantly, never stolen. This is what NFTs can bring to the world, and right now artists are at the forefront of exploring this new tech,” he said.

Artists like Bari Lynn, who specializes in cubism fine art and currently sells most of her work through Instagram — but recently decided to give NFTs a try.

“I saw that the crypto and NFT space was really booming, and I knew I need to try it,” she said.

Lynn’s first NFT sold after a bidding war.

“It was super, super exciting,” Lynn said. “Then I made another one and the person who bought my second one was from Hong Kong, which is so crazy, because that was the whole point of me creating these NFTs: to reach different people all over the world.”

The trend is already catching fire. Artists have sold NFTs for millions.

“I met this artist, he told me he made a few hundred dollars here and there and was barely making anything. Well, he started creating NFTs, and he made over a million dollars that year through NFTs,” Lynn said.


About the Author:

Award-winning investigative reporter Merris Badcock joined the News 6 team in October 2020. Merris is the recipient of a Regional Edward R. Murrow Award, a Suncoast Regional Emmy Award, four Suncoast Emmy Regional nominations, and two first-place Florida Association of Broadcast Journalists’ Awards.