Efdot Unveils 'Breakthrough' and Talks of Art, NFTs and His New Drop

An inside look at Efdot's journey into digital art and the inspiration behind his latest drop on Rarible

Efdot Unveils 'Breakthrough' and Talks of Art, NFTs and His New Drop

Meet Efdot, a renowned visual artist and creative director based in New York City. Known for his versatile hand-drawn style, Efdot's murals, paintings, and digital animations have featured in collaborations with Nike, Adobe, MTV, and the Chicago Bulls.

His latest work, "Breakthrough," debuts today on Rarible, marking his first drop on the Base blockchain. The hand-drawn and 5:17 minute video loop with sound will be available for minting at 0.0053 ETH each from 10 AM ET May 28th to 11 PM ET May 30th.

"Breakthrough" by Efdot is the artist's longest animated artwork yet (5 minutes) exploring the concept of life cycles through the digital canvas.”

Get to know more about Efdot, the man behind the art, in this recent interview where he discusses his artistic evolution, creative process, and the potential of the NFT space.

After working with so many mediums and securing deals with renowned names like Topps and Apple, what drew you to the world of Digital Art and NFTs in the first place?

Efdot: My journey into NFTs began with a curiosity about digital art and its possibilities. The concept of creating art that could be owned and traded in a decentralized way was fascinating. NFTs allowed me to bypass traditional barriers and connect with a global audience. The community's enthusiasm and the innovative spirit of the space pushed me to dive deeper and explore new dimensions in my work.

“I’m super excited to bring this piece to life in partnership with Rarible, as my first work on Base.”

I first heard about NFTs at a moment when my studio practice was going through a big shift. I had just finished my biggest commercial project (with Topps) that kept me busy from 2020 to 2021. While those were all physical cards only, they were illustrated digitally on my iPad. So I had been honing this digital drawing skill the entire time for many years, even for my murals… digitally illustrating them before painting.

Vibrant, abstract-meets-figurative style that spans various mediums. From murals to digital animations. Can you describe your creative process and the inspirations behind your creations?

Efdot: My creative process is somehow both chaotic and meditative, organic and intuitive. I don’t plan many of my pieces. My favorite way to create is to go in with an open mind and let the piece unfold.

My process blends from physical to digital (and back) seamlessly—whichever I’m feeling in the moment. Sometimes it stems from a fascination with a concept or material, or based on a particular emotion or experience I had recently. I also love to challenge myself in the execution of pieces and pushing my tools or using them for things they are not normally used for. 

My brain seems to be working on these ideas in the background, and then I start a new piece, and it takes on a life of its own, speaking back to me.

I love to find patterns and play with perception. In a world full of inspiration, here are a few of my top things that I dream about: music, nature and different natural wonders, conversations, skateboarding, typography, geography, architecture… 

Inspirations include my grandmother who was a stained glass artist, and several mentors I’ve had in my early career such as John Langdon.

What's the transition been like moving from mainly doing mural work in the streets (pre-pandemic) to doing a lot more digitally native work (post-pandemic)? What compels you to tie them together?

Efdot: First off I want to say I’m grateful. Transitioning from street murals to digital work was initially challenging but also incredibly rewarding. The pandemic and different projects and desires pushed me to delve deeper into digital mediums. I was curious what my murals and other artworks would look like moving or as a system of rules and patterns.

What compels me to tie them together is the desire to create a cohesive body of work that bridges my past experiences with current explorations. Each medium informs the other, enriching my overall artistic practice.

I love the social aspect of physical work and public art. It gives me great energy that I bring back to the studio to channel when I’m creating digitally.

What about your new piece, 'Breakthrough,' is a departure from your past animated drawings, and how did your process change for this project?

Efdot: This piece represents a significant departure due to its complexity, length and thematic depth. I incorporated more layers and experimented with light and dark contrasts and transitions.

The process changed as I used a built-in “process time-lapse” function in my favorite drawing tool more intentionally, allowing the animation to decompose and rebuild itself.

It reflects the life cycle, themes of reinvention, reincarnation.

It was a more deliberate and reflective approach compared to my earlier work and the output creates a very different viewing experience—encouraging the viewer to have a longer moment of quiet.

How did you come up with the title, and is it a personal breakthrough for you?

Efdot: The title "Breakthrough" was inspired by the concept of pushing boundaries and finding new avenues of expression. In addition, it feels as if we are living through a seismic shift in the way we see the world and how culture is supported and consumed. 

It symbolizes so much for me personally, but I love how others have also commented on the piece. It symbolizes the small batch of optimists who show up to this space looking for change breakthroughs not just for quick hits. 

The deliberate pieces stack up. Elements of the piece but also my personal journey.

This work represents a significant evolution in my artistic process, marking a moment of growth and new possibilities. It's about breaking through limitations and discovering what lies beyond them.

This is your first artwork on Base. How do you think NFTs are changing the way artists create, share, and monetize their work?

Efdot: NFTs are changing the game by giving artists direct access to a global audience and new monetization opportunities. They allow for greater artistic freedom and the ability to earn perpetual royalties through smart contracts.

This shift is empowering artists to sustain themselves and focus more on their creative pursuits without relying on traditional gatekeepers.

Are there any tips or tools you can share with other artists getting into web3?

Efdot: Staying updated is crucial. I spend time engaging with the community on Twitter and Discord, following thought leaders and participating in discussions.

When it comes to the web3 tools, I’m just following my curiosity and paying attention to the conversations that feel exciting to me.

The internet and X make it fairly easy these days to research new tools and platforms. The problem is that there are so many, and it can feel overwhelming. But we need to remember to ask for help—there are people who will want to help when you have a solid vision.

I’ve been lucky enough to meet a lot of great builders and curators and artist relations people just by hanging out in spaces online and IRL events. I make it a point to attend virtual conferences and workshops to stay informed about new developments and technologies.

What’s something you wish you had been told when you were starting out in art NFTs? Any advice for emerging artists looking to break into the space?

Efdot: My advice is to focus on authenticity in your work, truly exploring new things while pushing your practice and process. Also, try to foster genuine connections with the community.

Don’t be too hard on yourself because 99% of artists are not selling their work. It’s a long journey and we need a ton of patience and persistence to get anywhere, but each little break makes it a very meaningful journey.

Learn about the technology and tools available, and don’t be afraid to experiment. It’s a space that rewards persistence and innovation, so stay resilient and keep pushing your boundaries.