3 Reasons why I created a collectible NFT project on Opensea

Well, this is like the second chapter of a little story I’ve started here, where I was explaining and listing the 3 reasons why I joined the NFT art world.

This is another cool story which talks about a vision, super personal, that actually could fit for you or not. It’s my Trading Cards project, the first 20 cards (000 to 019) were dropped September 2nd 2021, sold out after one hour ( yeah I’ll never stop to feel stoked about that, totally unexpected)

Here I’m gonna show you the little introduction I wrote just a couple days ago to introduce the project to everyone. Here is the full page on my website, where you can also find some FAQs.

Think about a colourful planet with flows of liquid rainbows filling up the sky in an explosion of brilliant lights and rumbling vibes of happiness.

Think about pink rivers and red skies firing up the sunset of a warm day of August, green long grass under your feet while you walk on infinite fields populated by multiple eyed creatures running and smiling and beating up each other in a playful, sometimes violent infinite game called life.

And green monsters are surfing infinite long waves barreling in a gold beach while the sun is firing acid green and purple gamma rays all around, while red skeletons skateboarders are doing big airs on the pool by the beach and the crowd’s hands are clapping so hard that the whole earth is shaking and overexcited demons are convulsively dancing on it, firing flames from their eyes.

That’s our world, a Weird World.

I’ve always thought about creating a world populated by weird creatures doing the most stupid and fun things, a nosense psychedelic spinning wheel with all the stuff I love. So that’s the first reason, is like giant outlet where I can go wild creating all the stuff I want, connected to each other.

I don’t know how you folks grow up, but for me has been all connected and started with skateboarding, going forward with punk rock music, fun gigs, surfing and a bunch of stuff. Recently, motorcycles too. Choppers, to be precise. So basically creating this cards my goal is to create a serie of windows where you can see an entire world behind the glass. Weird people, weird spaceships, weirdos smoking weed and having bad trips, wise wizards and all sort of weird stuff connected to it, like the atomic fart for example:

If you are familiar with all the Santa Cruz, Zero Skateboards, Volcom, Baker, Consolidated graphics and stickers, then you’ll see some references and inspiration out there on the trading card project. For now I just come out with a serie of 50 cards, but hopefully is going to be a longer project. It’s hard to come out with all the stuff I have in my mind, but I’m trying to create different sections for it, like The Wizard for example:

And here I’m introducing the second reason, it’s an incredibly powerful source for inspiration. Creating such a big collection like this one it’s important to create and keep in mind some common elements, and that’s why you should check more successful projects (yes folks, internet is full of people more talented then you) to see how it’s presented, how’s the story etc. etc.

Study, study, and keep studying. That’s the key I guess. I hope so.

Anyway, with the second drop I introduced the bags, which actually are normal collectibles like the card themselves, but they help to create the right background, recall the right vibes, positioning the cards in the right time. Let’s try this: you’re in your first years of your life, it’s like 1985 or 1996, your choice, and this spot is playing on tv:

VHS playing, 80s music, monsters, gamma rays and some ruins of influence of the psychedelic years in the form of weird cartoons. Sounds familiar?

Think about how many creatures could populate this kind of world. I’ll share some ideas here: punx skulls of any kind, dressed with metallic jackets driving crazy customised cars in some Mad Max vibes, slimey multiple eyed monsters coming out from weird forests, metalheads squirrels driving badass choppers and triple eyed bats firing purple lasers all around. Oh and this without mentioning a cross-over with other characters from other projects, for example I did two cards about Smelly Rob, a little filthy surfer rat I draw this year, take a look to this little comic on instagram.

So yeah, as you can see there’s a bunch of stuff going on, that is going to come out in the next days/weeks/months. So if I have to jump up to the third reason, which actually is a common element for a lot of different projects, well it’s creating or partecipate to a community.

It’s nice to be a lone wolf of course, you can manage your time and stuff, but it’s also nicer to interact with a community of new artists and collectors. It’s incredibly inspiring and also helpful to maybe collect some new client work! Personally the best that I found out is the Lowbrow collective on Discord, you can join the community here.

I’m new to Discord so I don’t have a lot of stuff to share about it, but I can say one thing for sure: it’s incredibly good to meet new people and have some feedback. You can post your art there and have some opinions, which is incredibly helpful. If you stop and think about how many people interact with you on Instagram for example, you’ll realise that just a few of them stop by to say hi, Twitter and Discord work very differently.

So, stay tuned on Twitter here, because today I’m gonna announce something cool about the project, which is going to move some new steps this week. A lot of pieces of the second drop of the collection are still available by me, and the others could be found on the secondary market doing some offers to the first buyers so, go take a look on Opensea, and come say hi on the Twitter, feel free to reach out if you have any questions!

Who am I and why I love working full-time as a freelance illustrator

I’m Joe Tamponi, I’m 32 and I started working as a full time freelance illustrator three years ago, after spending three weeks in California. First off I want to suggest you something to listen reading this post, this album. Check out to this other post that analyze some colors from some punk rock covers!

Joe Tamponi - Illustration & Graphic design inspired by Skateboarding, Surfing  & psychedelic art.

I started skateboarding when I was fourteen, and surfing when I was sixteen. When I was a teenager I started with the wrong board and I was lost in a bunch of other things. Thanks to a friend in California some years later I re-started and fell in love again. But stop with the boring stuff.

I love drawing bold, eye catchy, super colored illustrations that make you feel like you’re in the 90s again.

Try to picture yourself, pushing that stunning Santa Cruz skateboard deck in a sunny road with a bunch of palm trees over you, with the Nofx pumping in your headphones. Thinking about nothing, heading to a flat spot to learn some tricks and kill some time with your buddies.

What I’m looking for in a successful artwork is to create something that looks like a vintage skateboard sticker. With all those flat colors and badass punk fonts. Let’s see some examples:

Take a look at these, and you can see what I love the most. In the 80s ( and even earlier) legendary graphic designers like Jim Phillips and Jimbo Phillips, Vernon Courtlandt Johnson, Kevin Ancell, started an incredible art style.

There were a lot of different branches I know, but their work inspired generations of young skateboards, illustrators and graphic designers.

pic by Cridar – 2013

But I always been that kind of person who loves a bunch of stuff, and something that seriously inspired me it’s all that poster art which came out from the psychedelic era.

For example the legendary gig posters of the Fillmore Auditorium in San Francisco from 60s/70s, by Bill Graham. I mean look at the composition and the color palettes of this stuff. they’re just incredible.

The study behind that fonts inspired by the psychedelic trips, the colors are vibrating, sometimes they’re hard to read, the composition looks like is moving into weird shapes.

So, as a freelance illustrator usually I like to do something in the middle. I love the psychedelic art of the 60s because of those flashy, drippy, bubbly psychedelic texts. But I also love the strong, bold lines of the punk-rock, skateboard, surfing inspired illustrations from the 80s and 90s. Punk rock badass fonts, popping eyes, flying slime and all that crazy stuff.

When I was younger I was always adding a bunch of lines to my artworks and everything was super messy.Always struggling to find the way to catch the right thickness with a fair amount of details. It’s something that it’s always on my mind when I’m drawing. The perfect balance between a bold minimal piece and something detailed.

Well, the research and the study never ends, nothing it’s perfect, and it will never be. If you liked my works and you were already thinking about looking for a graphic designer to hire well, you should text me to joeitamponi@gmail.com let’s work on something awesome!