Hassan Karimi

Apr 29, 2022

Looking For An On Ramp to Web3? Give Tezos (XTZ) a Go.

If you haven’t yet made the plunge into Web3 and are looking for a good entry point, I recommend giving the Tezos (XTZ) blockchain a shot.

It’s where I settled in back in December 2021 and have seen many others do the same. Over time, I’ve come to appreciate the Tezos community that has this cool edgy feel to it. I’ll share what I mean about this further down the article, but first I want to discuss some of its benefits and features. 

Tezos is fast. It has some great marketplaces. Transaction fees are miniscule. The ecosystem is pretty mature with new dApps and platforms coming online regularly. It allows for a great low cost, low stakes entry.

While the Ethereum NFT markets certainly have the most activity and many of the highest profile projects — you pay through the nose in gas fees (transaction costs) making experiments and potential mistakes even more costly.

And I’m not the only one who feels Tezos is a good a starting place. Recently, I was reading a prominent Web3 newsletter, Metaversal that also suggested Tezos as a great starting place.

For whatever reason, cryptoart on Tezos is cheap. I’ve seen a handful of artists with high priced art on Ethereum choosing to sell on Tezos as a means of providing art accessible at lower prices. 

This is what I was alluding to earlier on why Tezos seems like an edgy indie joint. It’s not run by flippers looking to get rich quick from buying and selling art. Most collectors on Tezos are not looking for their golden goose. And those that are, quickly learn they’re in the wrong place. 

As an artist, it’s a double edged sword. You’ll start with lower priced art on Tezos that will increase in value at a slower pace. But you get to showcase alongside many great artists and don’t risk hundreds of dollars in gas fees. 

Another unique quality I’ve found on Tezos is that artists sell editions instead of 1/1s, meaning as an artist you would mint multiple editions, say 25, of one piece instead of just a single edition. That, in part, accounts for some of the lower pricing. The advantage is exposure to more collectors that may pay off in the long run. 

So how do you get started?

I’d start with buying Tezos on Gemini (I believe it’s the only U.S. Crypto exchange that has a trading pair with Tezos at the moment). Once you do that, use a browser wallet like Kukai or Temple for experimenting or a hardware wallet like Ledger or Trezor if you really want a higher layer of cybersecurity. 

The Metaversal article I linked earlier gives more details on different NFT marketplaces. I find Objkt to be a great starting place.  

I’m not sure that Tezos would be the best destination for your utility-backed pfp project with a 10 year roadmap, but Arthur Breitman suggests otherwise in this Twitter thread:

https://twitter.com/arthurb/status/1510347752068325380?s=10&t=VOEkBdHiD_2D7B3fGueiNw

As a note, notice the lizard creature in his avatar — that’s a Trezzard which is a big pfp (profile picture NFT)  project on the Tezos blockchain. He’s not an impartial judge here and I believe he works directly with the Tezos team.

It’s hard to predict how everything plays out in the future. Will the market catch on to the fact that art is underpriced on Tezos and cause a huge spike in prices over time or will it maintain lower prices and remain as a market for more accessible art?

I won’t even pretend to speculate on the overall Tezos ecosystem, but there are many open questions there.

Here are some informative YouTube videos to learn more about the Tezos blockchain:

What is Tezos - XTZ Self-Amending Explained with Animations 

What is Tezos? XTZ


Must Know Artists and Projects on Tezos

Now that you’ve considered getting onto Tezos, let’s take a look at some of the popular artists and projects you can find here. 

John Karel, also known as jjjjjjohn - he rose to Tezos prominence with his Window Still Life series. At this point, many artists make derivative versions and you’ll see other occasional references in Tezos art. He still mints new projects and pretty much shits gold. 

Paper Buddha, like a few others I’m listing, has works on multiple blockchains. Their work is described as “psychedelic collages” of many different depictions of the Buddha.

There’s a group of realists / surrealists  portrait painters that mint some incredible NFT art that I’ve been following:

Jeremy Lipking

David Cheifetz

Francien Krieg

Tania Rivilis

 Loginovart

XCOLLABZ is another great account/creator worth following. They arrange collaborations between talented artists on Tezos. 

Tim Maxwell is a prominent artist minting on Tezos that makes beautifully detailed monochromatic line drawings.

You will also find many brilliant artists that work with generative algorithms and AIs to make art. Here are a few worth checking out. 

Ganbrood

Rare

Jenni Pasanen

huemin

Beyond these individual artists,there are some collections and series worth looking into as well.

Heart You

Tezzardz

Dogamí

ZIGGURATS

Ottez

There are innumerable wonderful projects and artists on Tezos with new folks joining everyday. These are just a few. Just as I mentioned above about Glitch artists, please reply in the comments with some of your favorite Tezos artists and collections. I’d love to hear and discover more!

Originally published on The Voyage newsletter on April 22, 2022.


As I dig deeper into Web3, the discussion will involve cryptocurrency and I want to make sure to include this disclaimer. This is not financial advice and is intended for informational purposes only. 

As a disclaimer, I have no background or expertise in finances. law, or economics. This article explores new technologies like NFTs and cryptocurrencies and the potential uses for artists and creators. This is for informational purposes only. It is not offered or intended to be used as legal, investment, financial, or other advice.

Hassan Karimi

Sharing new ways to look at things—like tech and mythology—and extract lessons for the creative journey. UX designer, former architect and sketchbook maker.