LEViT∆TE: Working with mixed media in the NFT space

LEViT∆TE: Working with mixed media in the NFT space

Editorial is open for submissions: [email protected]

LEViT∆TE: Working with mixed media in the NFT space

12 months ago

Editorial is open for submissions: [email protected]

By LEViT∆TE

If you grew up in the digital era, from the late nineties and on, your vocabulary of artistic expression is most likely somewhat different from generations that preceded your own. For a lot of us, the piano is instead replaced with a DAW, the paint brush, a digital brush on photoshop or illustrator, your film could be anything from a DSLR camera to a DCC (C4D, Blender, Maya etc.) and a render engine. This is the space I personally developed as an artist.

Unlike traditional mediums that our predecessors used to create art, modern digital art gives the collector and spectator the rare ability to experience these pieces through sight, sound and interactivity, sometimes simultaneously, anywhere and at any time they choose. Furthermore, previous to the common use of NFT’s there wasn’t a well known opportunity to effectively collect and trade these digital pieces as a curator. I find multimedia projects like this to be more akin to performance art rather than studio art in the sense of immersion, and for me that is endlessly inspiring. Through this inspiration I personally have used the skills i’ve acquired through the years to achieve a somewhat realistic-surrealism that I often longed for during my own childhood. 

This past January, I worked on a project that focused on this phenomenon. Making a point to encapsulate a concept, through digital film, CGI renders, 2D design, digitally produced audio, recorded foley, and an interactive medium using openGL language that many of us know as a .GLTF or .GLB. Through this process the goal was to take a pipeline that is entirely digital and emulate tangible reality to a point that crosses beyond the threshold of feeling as though the piece is imprisoned within a computer, although ultimately it still is. 

I decided to name this series “Suspending Disbelief” focusing on the idea of immersion through sight/ sound and interactivity. The final result consists of 3 pieces all centered around an other-worldly character: 

  • Part one, a fully CGI rendered scene, including a fully cohesive foley backtrack, and a score to match. 
  • Part two, a filmed scene where the character is later rendered and composited in post, also including a cohesive foley backtrack and another original score to set the scene. 
  • Then, there’s the third part which is the interactive .glb allowing the viewer and collector to then visualize and examine the details of the character in an interactive format. 

Although the possibilities are completely endless, and groundbreaking pieces are released daily, moving forward, I would like to outline my personal experience through a project like this and how I approached this workflow. 

Due to the fact, I decided to hand build this character using a process called Kit-bashing I had to visualize a rough idea of the figure of this character before creating and working with actual geometry, so my first course of action was to sit down with my tablet and sketch rough forms using photoshop. I am in no means an illustrator, but achieving an aesthetically pleasing silhouette is an absolute obligation, therefore the quickest way to visualize was to draw it by hand.

Shortly after, following this process, I knew I would have to rig, then animate this character by hand therefore it was time to shape the fundamentals. So I jumped into Cinema 4D. My favorite way of rigging mechanical characters is by using primitive geometry called “controllers” then connecting them through IK chains, which is a virtual chain that connects 2 or more pieces of geometry together, like kinetic joints. During this process, I built very simple geometry in the basic shape of my character, that I could then use like a template to kitbash around. Since these basic shapes were chained together, whatever I connected to them would also move as the primitives would, when I animate my character. 

Then came the kitbashing part (also in Cinema 4D). This process is alot like building with legos in 3D, with some hard surface modeling techniques peppered in. I used a few kits, framestock’s “Robot Parts” kit, “Woman Cyber Z26” by Oscar Creativo, and “Free Sci-fi Kitbash” by Radomir3D. These kits included hydraulic pumps, pieces of armour, just general small pieces of robotic parts and machinery, with the exception of “Woman Cyber Z26” where I used the majority of the geometry in that piece, but altered it in ways that better fit the silhouette. This process consisted of logically thinking of how each part would intermingle and functionally work together, as well as fitting an overall shape of the character that made sense. When everything was said and done, I was left with the geometry of the character, functionally rigged and working together.

Next was the most work intensive part, and that was the texturing. During this process my tool was primarily Substance Painter. Through the course of a week, I moved through each part, hand “painting” textures, materials, damage and scratches throughout. The process resulted in 170 hand painted textures for each mechanical part of the character. This is of course, not counting the exception of the pieces from “Woman Cyber Z26” which were only altered using node logic in octane render, because I was quite fond of the texture work done by Oscar Creativo. 

At this point, the character is built. Moving back into C4D, I then created a minute long animation that matched my vision, then it was time to composite. Before I moved into designing the full CGI scene, I decided to film and work on the composited scene first. This process consisted of me taking my Sony A7sii, a gimbal stabilizer, a field recorder and a spherical 360 camera to an abandoned site in Los Angeles to set the scene where my character would be found. On sight, before anything, I had to make a spherical HDRI image, so the reflection and lighting of my character would have physically accurate reflections and lighting. This process was done using a Ricoh Theta S. Then after, with my field recorder mounted to my camera, and the camera mounted to the stabilizer, I took a series of shots, doing my best to emulate a first person perspective of someone observing this character in real life.

With the film, audio, and HDRI all shot, it was time to work on camera tracking. This process is extremely tedious and often times frustrating, but in the true nature of art, it was necessary to deal with the bullsh*t. After a few days of banging my head on my desk, the tracking was finished, and I had a virtual camera that matched the movements of the actual filmed shot. It was then time to work on rendering the character and incorporating the lighting as well as extra assets to blend into the scene. After this sequence was rendered, it was then composited onto the shot and color corrected in Adobe After Effects. 

The visual from this scene was done, so next was the audio. I then used the filmed audio from the scene to capture my footsteps and the ambient noise. Following that I used my field recorder to record foley of rocks shuffling, metal objects on concrete and extra footsteps. Once all of these assets were compiled, it was time to move into Ableton to work on some simple engineering and processing these sounds together to sound more physically accurate and clean them up. This was also my opportunity to design the supernatural sound that’s found near the end of the piece. Once all of the foley work was sequenced to match the video it was time to create the soundtrack. 

The soundtrack for both of the animated pieces was the same as any other score production work i’ve done. Working in ableton, I played some fitting melodies on my midi keyboard, and designed some simple leads as well as a satisfying bassline and a retro futuristic bass stab and viola. I found the result extremely satisfying and fitting for the scene. 

Now that the final composited piece was finished, It was time to put my character into a fully digital space. This is where Unreal Engine came in handy. The process of crossing over my character was not as simple as a drag and drop. Alot of conversions and re-mapping of textures needed to happen, but after a tedious day or 2, he was functioning in real time. I then designed a forest using quixel megascan assets, as well as some basic modeling of the landscape, and a lot of tactical placement of trees/ water and props. Then designed the lighting, and finally dropped the character in the scene. 

The camera work for Unreal Engine was interesting, because I hadn’t done this process before, but I knew I ultimately wanted to emulate a first person perspective. My way of going about this process was by using my iphone and an app called “Camtrack AR” to record the movement of me walking and filming through my phone. I then took that data and moved it into Unreal Engine, and mapped the coordinates to my virtual camera. The result luckily was exactly what I wanted, but required a bit of cleaning up (due to shaking.) 

Incorporating a fully CGI scene gives the unique opportunity of creating an environment and events that would be impossible in the real world, after the fact, I added some more surreal lighting effects and events within the environment that gave a sense of true supernatural events caused by the character (rocks floating, glowing lights in the distance etc.) After everything was rendered out, the process for the audio in this scene mirrored that of the composited scene. 

Finally it was time to create the .glb file. With NFTs I love the idea of the collector being able to collect a small trinket, almost like a digital bobblehead or something that allows some further immersion into a character or scene. So for me, it was necessary to make this thing I built into a .glb that was fully AR and VR compatible.

This process consisted of compressing all of my textures, and sizing them down to fit into .glb materials, then remapping all 170 textures to work with openGL language. Another tedious step in the process but necessary. After my materials were looking correct and functioning, I had to optimize the geometry, because the main caveat of the .gltf and .glb formats are the size of the file. For Superrare, if your file is larger than 50mb, you are unable to upload it, which is very practical being that a .glb file larger than 50mb will likely crash your browser. 

When everything was said and done, I truly felt all three of these pieces in conjunction were enough for the audience to really get a feel for the character and the nuances of the design. Through general ambience, aesthetic and the overall experience I am hoping to immerse the viewer into taking a step into the conceptual universe surrounding this designed character. I find this process of working in mixed digital media so fascinating because previous to this current digital era, as an independent artist, working on this scale and translating art in such a concise way through sight, sound and interactivity was virtually impossible.

Furthermore in recent times, the NFT industry and overall marketplace gives us the new ability to present these pieces in a virtual gallery setting with other artists, and finally presents a way for collectors to collect ownership of these pieces, and trade them if they so choose. Whereas previously artists would be trapped within the bubble of either expressing this work only for clients or personal use. This concept is not only liberating but redefines value in digital creativity that I believe has grown and will continue to grow similar to the way street art had grown into a major staple in the artistic community in the early 2000’s. The sentiment is commonly heard, but I truly am excited to see every way this industry and community grows, and I know for me personally this takes priority over my own work even as a commissioned artist. I am genuinely so excited to see what the future holds for NFT art, and mixed media digital artists like myself. 

28

SuperRare

SuperRare is a marketplace to collect and trade unique, single-edition digital artworks.

Art

Tech

Curators' Choice

New artists on SuperRare

New artists on SuperRare

New artists on SuperRare

1 year ago

Ilustrator Visual artist from Indonesia. Exist between playground and graveyard.

The Ambivalence

Edition 1 of 1

When you are experiencing both happiness and sadness at the same time, how does it suppose to make you feel?  Being trapped between those two contradicting situations makes you lose the ability to function. In a flash, all the flooded emotions have drained you inside out, leaving you all empty and numb. Made with Procreate & Adobe After Effects Illustration & Animation by Wickana Music by Kuntari  

Between dream and nightmare. 

Ariadne

Edition 1 of 1

Like Ariadne’s thread that saved Theseus from the labyrinth, the same thread binds us today and leads us to eternity. RedruM 2022

Welcome to Pichwish

The Day of Our Age

Edition 1 of 1

The Day of Our Age Underground rebellion ,last hope of Laser Garden citizens. They come back with the chosen child from ancient legend. As the antique record said, she will assemble all strongest members then lead us to the Declaration of Independence. This is our new era.  

modern digital artist

oh darling my head’s not right

Edition 1 of 1

a polyptych of confined screams and empty dreams.

Dark arts and mythological creatures  

POSEIDON

Edition 1 of 1

POSEIDON, was one of the Twelve Olympians in ancient Greek religion and myth, god of the sea, storms, earthquakes and horses. 4543 x 6926 pixels Blasphemy Ink 2022  

Juice Bruns is an Illustrator, painter, muralist, and hiphop artist based in Baltimore. 

PERSEVERE

Edition 1 of 1

I used to see the doubt and fear as my enemy, Now I redirect the energy to things that will better me. PERSEVERE, (2022) Hand drawn in procreate

Color in this boring world

The Dog Did It

Edition 1 of 1

Accountability…  

Experimenting with ideas.  

Can I Pick Your Brain?

Edition 1 of 1

You’re an individual finding success in your field. You receive an email from someone unknown and they congratulate you on your accomplishments. They close by asking, “if you have a moment, can I pick your brain?”.

MD DIGITAL ILLUSTRATOR EXPERIMENTING W/ CPU BL00D. Seeing Red • Milked from the Motherboard • Kissed by Chaos 

4 Riders of the iPOCALYPSE (#1: Conquest)

Edition 1 of 1

iku: Some call it the end Anti-genesis perhaps AIntelligence reigns. 3000 x 3000 digital ink.  

Young artist, visionary and dreamer who tries to show each climax of his life with art. 

Dance post mortem

Edition 1 of 1

After dying with the sweet poison of passion and love, you learn that the darkest voices of your hell will always be with you, putting on masks that will protect you from much suffering… The gloom of your soul will become a beautiful black dress which you will wear with lust when dancing with your demons. Welcome to the dance of darkness and elegance, welcome to the part of you that you have always escaped.  
28

SuperRare

SuperRare is a marketplace to collect and trade unique, single-edition digital artworks.

Art

Tech

Curators' Choice

New artists on SuperRare

New artists on SuperRare

New artists on SuperRare

1 year ago

Multidisciplinary artist.

Impression, Sunrise (Non-Objective Composition)

Edition 1 of 1

Digital Painting Yura Kimakovych, 2022

We play around with digital art, with its form and color. We are the definition of an art experiment. We are the art – in theory and practice. 

Stone of Life-Giving Comet

Edition 1 of 1

We are trying to find the answer to the origin of life. Comets scattered around the universe, flying silently, leaving a long tail of ice behind. The water, that’s all life needs. Carried by the silence between the stars, it could be the source of entire civilizations.

French artist using artificial intelligence to fully express my creative vision since 2021

Fractured Museum

Edition 1 of 1

Fractured Museum represents the fractured mind of the ai artist who is submerged with so many creative possibilities, constantly juggling with exploring the endless possible variations of a current style, trying new ones and curating the thousands of outputs. Too much freedom can sometimes be difficult to handle.

am London based illustrator motion designer who inspires movement and positivity through my creativity.

Planet Love

Edition 1 of 1

I have dreamt about a new world, immerse by love and colours where my creative mind is a place where you can be sure to find inspiration and positivity.

Willard is contemporary artist exploring the poetic depth of ordinary things.

The First Snow

Edition 1 of 1

“The First Snow” (2022) borrows elements from my code-based generative works to create a landscape that comments both on the pictorial construction of images and the melancholy of everyday life. 7200 x 9000 pixels

RAM creates deep and disturbing images through the use of his canvas. He views the world in shades of Red.  

GO!

Edition 1 of 1

40″ x 40″ Acrylic & Oil pastels on Canvas I’m on Go Mode. No more holding back. I’ve worked my whole life for this moment. This moment is My Moment and we gonna keep going till our bones are grinded to dust.

Exploring abstract calligraphy

Neural Collapse

Edition 1 of 1

Asemic calligraphy · sumi ink · paper  

Oil Painter, Digital Artist World-Builder

New Hollywood

Edition 1 of 1

New Hollywood (5000 A.D.) This floating island is the first in the 27 piece collection “Sunderlands Genesis.” Sunderlands is the post-apocalyptic universe created by oil painter and digital artist Shelby Stardust, where all of her art exists. **SOUND ON, original music** The purchaser of this artwork will receive a signed 24” x 36” physical component, a full resolution image file and looping 32 second animation with music upon contacting artist @shelbystardust through Twitter. To read the story behind this artwork and find future auction dates, visit https://www.sunderlandsnft.com  

Post-abstract digital artist from London UK.

The State of Not Being Somewhere

Edition 1 of 1

My SuperRare genesis piece absence and edges / margins and thresholds / what was intentional / what has been left behind / the ghost of a symbol / the spectre at the letters edge / the tape around the door way / the long forgotten scrawl / the accidental boundary / the glue that collects dust, asking to be remembered.

Bob Marley smoking a spliff

Edition 1 of 1

Bob Marley smoking a spliff at his house at 56 Hope Rd. 1974
28

SuperRare

SuperRare is a marketplace to collect and trade unique, single-edition digital artworks.

Art

Tech

Curators' Choice

New Artists on SuperRare

New Artists on SuperRare

New Artists on SuperRare

1 year ago

Painter, Animator, Collector  

Ecstasy

Edition 1 of 1

EEE-43048-Ecstasy Crystals are beautiful I’m high, up in the sky with my friend Mandy I want to run, jumping is so cool C₁₁H₁₅NO₂ I’m sad, XXX 40 minutes passed in 3 hours I’m a human again X,X,X XTC I love Molly, I can fly 3,4-Methylen IIIIIIII Looooove chemistry!!!!!! thank you Merk thank you so much I’m a human again in 2 hours…  

push meaningful art  

Choose Your Life

Edition 1 of 1

They teach you how to become a doctor, an engineer, an architect. No one teaches you how to become yourself. Welcome to your ready-made life. Exhibitions: Alike / Milan / 2020 Ripido Festival / Bruneck / 2022 JPG 5600×5600 2019  

Intricate drawings that highlight uncomfortable truths  

CONQUEST

Edition 1 of 1

The horde of megalomaniacs races towards its own demise  

Obfuscating the context of the natural world  

Spectrum of Eventualities

Edition 1 of 1

At the nexus of everything exists a spectrum of eventualities a syncopated cacophony of echoes that form into a moment.  

Artist

catalyst.

Edition 1 of 1

a beautiful change emerges. pain was necessary. challenges were needed. and everything I suffered was the catalyst for a better tomorrow. 

Forgotten parts of the brain. Dystopian therapist and onieric illustrator. Editorial design and Freelance Artist  

The unpredictable

Edition 1 of 1

Mapping the impossible is not a chimera when we talk about destiny  

Painting photography with sculptural elements.  

Dali’s nightmare!

Edition 1 of 1

This kind of work started in a period of great tension! I saw many faces at the last step of life. The spirit fragmented, was waiting for the body. I start by painting with some sculptural elements. Alongside I use lighting & macro photography. The final editing happens in Photoshop. No AI involved.  

creative studio based in Amsterdam, creating immersive stories.  

Icarus

Edition 1 of 1

Icarus falling from the sky 

Director-Producer, Urban Fine Art Photographer, NFT Collector https://linktr.ee/Highwire  

The Palace

Edition 1 of 1

The Palace is the genesis NFT of my new color collection Time Travel. This piece captures L.A.’s once glamorous movie palace district, where the brightly lit marquees sit incongruously on the dark downtown street populated by shuttered businesses. Its lights send a message of hope and promise for a brighter future. This collection encapsulates L.A. as I came to see it during the height of the pandemic, stylistically inspired by the visual language of film noir and the “happy accidents” one encounters in urban street photography.  

Fine Artist, Tetrachromat, Lover of Nature, Celestial Muse 

Tetra Galaxy

Edition 1 of 1

Tetra Galaxy is an eye of the universe. A celestial dream overflowing with color. This is a journey across millions of lightyears, where there are as many colors, forming a dreamscape of self-discovery. Even in the darkest parts of space, stars and luminous bodies shine like lighthouses for the unknown traveler. This is an animated tetrachromat oil painting.
28

SuperRare

SuperRare is a marketplace to collect and trade unique, single-edition digital artworks.

Art

Tech

Curators' Choice

New artists on SuperRare

New artists on SuperRare

New artists on SuperRare

1 year ago

Visual artist creating surreal worlds with photography, video and miniatures.  

CONTROL

Edition 1 of 1

License: Primary NFT holder is free to use in advertising, display privately and in groups, including virtual galleries, documentaries and essays by holder of the NFT, as long as the creator is credited. Provides no rights to create commercial merchandise, commercial distribution, or derivative works. Copyright remains with the creator.  

APC// HOGAR// I.B.D.C // STREETHACKING//

Niño de Tiananmen

Edition 1 of 1

Legendary Colombian street artist StinkFish presents his first ever NFT. His work centres around the everyday person, capturing moments of life in portraits he transports around the world as a form of cultural exchange that goes from photograph to stencil to finished mural. Exalting the beauty and finding a shared communion in the moments of our collective humanity that elude borders. Niño de Tianamen (2022) is a mural realised in Bogotá, Colombia based upon a photo taken by StinkFish in Tinammen Square (2015) with the help of SuperRare and ArtDAO for the Gitcoin Schelling Point Conference.

maybe it’s time to stop and change your perspective

Edition 1 of 1

we don’t have time to live we don’t have time to think we live and die breathless standing still is like some kind of crime and everybody wants to be the best we run in circles we can’t stop and all the time we’re being watched by that man sitting on a green hill Genesis piece

Harmonic combination of female body forms emphasizing the beauty, power and energy through the body language, eyes and emotions.

Renascence

Edition 1 of 1

Renascence A piece about a new beginning, a new self, new energies. Dragonflies symbolize going past self-created illusions that limit our growth and ability to change. A symbol of happiness and new beginnings. Embrace the new you, embrace the changes.

Abraham Yael is the first Mexican to display cryptoart in worldwide exhibitions.  

THE DEATH OF SENECA

Edition 1 of 1

(This artwork was displayed in Times Square during the Armory Show in New York City 2022 for Art Innovation Gallery) This 3D artwork represents the death of the Stoic philosopher Seneca. That drained his veins, and suffocated in a hot bath. Represented by the red mist and hot water. His writings about morality and virtue, impacted so much in my life, he reflected what I consider to be an exceptional human being, so this artwork represents the moment in which Seneca ends up being worthy of Apotheosis.

Using emotional experiences to form energetic intention through mixed mediums. 19yo  

3

Edition 1 of 1

Mind-soul-body, birth-life-death. Genesis. There are 3 important circles in this piece representing the omen of creativity, optimism, and curiosity, forming a trinity. The intention I put behind the circle is important in itself, the never ending pursuit of a circle, once created will never stop; the only option is to continue the 360 degree rotation. This all ties into the main subjects’ uneasy pose, not quite sure which direction to go, grounded by shapes and connected by arm. The colors, and additional elements add reassurance and support. Albeit, this is my interpretation, which I realized after completion of the piece. I had no concrete direction going into this piece, I trusted intuition and this is the conclusion: Explore, find your own interpretation.  

“Wordsmithing” with A-I  

ɡrōth

Edition 1 of 1

“The graffiti vandal uses space to experience the city in a different but meaningful way, expressing the moments they experience through visual but non-verbal markers that many other community members do not communicate openly. New use of latent spaces becomes opportunities for communication, probing a reaction from the community.”  

To create means to be buzz dealer worldwide  

Spot

Edition 1 of 1

The spot means location where culture is creating. This is where the meet and parting, sport and cheel, art and exploring, ups and downs take place. Materials: Stretched canvas 50×100 cm, acrylic. Feel free to connect me for more info if you want the physical painting. Shipping calculates separatly depending on your place.  

weird digital artist 

Ego Death

Edition 1 of 1

He who is free in the body, but bound in the soul is a slave; but on the contrary he who is bound in the body, but free in the soul, is truly free.  

Black White Photographer An Echo Of Horror Hope  

Premonition

Edition 1 of 1

Are those with the gift of foresight powerless to stop the inevitable?  
28

SuperRare

SuperRare is a marketplace to collect and trade unique, single-edition digital artworks.

Art

Tech

Curators' Choice