Hello all you wonderful uplifters. It has been an absolutely amazing year in part due to all of you, and we just wanted to take this opportunity to give a brief review. So without further ado, lets dive on in to this recap we’ve prepared for you.
Although Uplift.Art is technically something new, the concept of melding blockchain and charity has been something some of us have been working on for quite some time now. Arising officially sometime late 2019, founder Michael Blu had a vision for how to bring philanthropy to the blockchain and hard coded it into the premise of what was then called UpliftNation.
The first iteration of this concept involved many hands all working tirelessly towards bringing about a revolution of the UpliftNation premise empowering through a combination of uplifting the multitudes with an ideology of where philanthropy and blockchain collide. A 501c3 non-profit status was set up in the US and a variety of brainstorming and funding options were trialed. From these early days, UpliftNation was heavily connected to a variety of individuals both in the real world non-profit philanthropic ecosystem, as well as a variety of individuals associated with quite prominent EOS and EOSIO based blockchain projects helping out where their expertise lay. Through this, we were able to build a base of knowledge for empowerment upon our next step of journeying into the beyond where no philanthropic nor blockchain based project had yet to conjure, but more on that in a bit.
First, it would be good to note that in that time UpliftNation had, with the help of a multitude of volunteers, become enabled to collect from the community a number of donations to the official UpliftNation EOSIO blockchain accounts that had previously been set up. For complete transparency, it was always UpliftNation’s objective to utilize 100% of the donations given for philanthropic means and not dip into these coffers to fund our building and day to day operations. To this day all these donations are still intact and have been set aside for a time when both the ecosystem and those we choose to help has progressed to a level in which project tokenomics and infrastructure can logistically handle proper utilization of these. For those wishing to monitor these accounts, please check ‘upliftnation’ on the EOS, WAX, TELOS, BEOS, Bitshares, an UX (formally Worbli).
Although Upliftnation had a great standing in the community and a lot of support not only from a financial donation basis, but also from the broader EOSIO community in terms of volunteer helpers, one of the major hurdles was developing a funding model that would continue to allow for all of the incoming donations to be utilized for philanthropic causes while at the same time finding a way to garner funding for the buildout of the ultimate vision enabling prosperity for all of the philanthropic projects we wished to support. This in addition to becoming accustomed to as well as forging a path that bridged the gap between charity and blockchain in an era of regulatory uncertainty was slightly troublesome and challenging due to lack of clarity on what would be allowed and what would not, despite the fact of a lot guidance from a variety of crypto experts and in particular our friends over at Haitian Roots. In the end this all proved rather a slow process, and in uncertain times brought on with the recent global pandemic we decided another path would better suit the needs of those at present in dire need.
It was around this time that blockchain and crypto space began experiencing a rise in the trend of non fungible tokens, or NFT’s which got the artist and musician in mBlu thinking. A long time advocate of EOS and EOSIO, a registered musician on Emanate, and an already established experience creating digital artifacts for Uplift Art on PIXEOS, mBlu dove in head long to experiment with various combinations of audio and visual art. It was around this time that the already fairly established WAX blockchain was going through a revamp of sorts itself with the introduction of a new up an coming asset exchange of sorts, Atomic Assets. And with that Uplift.Art was born.
Through a series of conversations with the Atomic Assets team as well as blockchain and business specialists, there finally seemed a way to do something that had never before been done – that being put a full length music video on the blockchain. Being more of a doer than anything, mBlu set his sights on being the first to do so and utilized the excess time due to the global pandemic to create the music and art which would eventually become the finished version of My Bitcoin Bull V, the first ever full length music video ever created on the blockchain.
With the compilation and creation of these two artistic mediums out of the way, the next thing line of thinking was how to best leverage this to help the UpliftNation achieve it long term vision in the making. Again pondering the regulatory clarity at the time and not wanting to burn any bridges in the future by any ill thought out pre-emptive actions, mBlu and the UpliftNation team decided to embark on a 72 hour auction of the My Bitcoin Bull V blockchain music video as a fund raise of sorts in order to enable the progression of their platform and mission.
As anyone who has been in the crypto and especially the WAX.io space for any time at all, when the hype comes it comes in droves. A video or two and a couple well placed pieces explaining the innovation and initiative at hand and word began to ripple throughout the up and coming WAX ecosystem. One thing led to another and mBlu appeared on Travis Wright & Joel Comms The Bad Crypto Podcast‘s ‘The Nifty Show’ to tell the tale of what he had done.
In the process of finalizing the release of their very own WAX based original IP project Blockchain Heroes, it came to be actually the second ever video on the blockchain was created. This one being a little different from the first, this was a video embedded into a special Blockchain Heroes card titled ‘The Uplifter’ and awarded to a select few that participated in the Uplift.Art My Bitcoin Bull 72 hour auction alongside other more rare versions of the MBB single.
In the end, the exposure when melded with the incredible reception of My Bitcoin Bull culminated in the resounding success of the first ever Uplift.Art auction, and the team both old and new that had assembled behind this vision for forging a new path forward toward victory for musicians, artists, collectors, and those in need alike, was convinced that what had been stumbled on was NFT gold.
Around this time it just so happened that a very talented musician sat idly one morning with a guitar in hand and decided to have a go at a My Bitcoin Bull remix, something Michael had mentioned in his vision of where this video could head in the future. Corey Cottrell was the musicians name and what came out of this collaboration with mBlu the artist and producer was truly astounding.
On this we must confess the timing being as completely unintentional as it was couldn’t have been better. With the plight of the children connected to Haitian Roots in mind, Uplift.Art ventured into the first full feature series revolving around an NFT music video, this time Corey Cottrell’s remix ‘I’m Not the Bubble’. The plan was simple and effective – build a model for change of everything involved from the creation of to the release of, and even the gamification of a series that could be a massive first response to a charitable cause in more need than ever before due to recent events associated with the halting of the supply chains because of the recent global pandemic.
In an effort to bring awareness to the event mBlu once again took to the screen to showcase the single and the associated artwork that would appear in the promotional set of crates to be given out to supporters of the mission. One of the tools Uplift.Art used to accomplish this was something they had been working on in the background which allowed them to peer inside any WAX account and target those specifically that held any My Bitcoin Bull assets from the first auction as well as The Serpent & the Wolf NFT given to early followers and registers to the community. This tool allowed for the send out ‘random drops of goodness’ in the form of promotional crates to showcase the art and fragments of the ‘I’m Not the Bubble’ Series One remix.
In conjunction with the creation of a new and improved team, website, marketing plan, blog, and social presence, the eventual release of the actual event was rolled out November 15th, 2020, and with it some all new never before conjured release and gamification aspects.
Previously in fact, it was a bit of a sticking point that the way NFT releases on WAX were rolled out were a little staked to those who had mastered the art of purchasing and opening packs, as it was the first to be opened would generate the #1 mint of certain assets. In this the ‘I’m Not the Bubble’ Series One diverged from the mold and created a new way forward in collaboration with Atomic Assets. In this rendition it was now possible to have the assets in the crates pre-minted and not held hostage to a first come first served mentality, allowing for not only more equal chances of anyone receiving a first mint no matter their unpacking skill level, but also the ability for patrons to fully appreciate the experience of opening the packs and enjoying the assets within their possession.
Of course, the intent was to prolong the anticipation and enjoyment in an effort to fulfill more completely the very reason why the reveal of ripping these assets is so appealing in the first place, but the last thing Uplift.Art wanted to do was strip all the first to round the bases action from the series. With this in mind then, a secondary tier of gamification revolving around two types burn to upgrade mechanics dubbed #TheMintSprint were conjured forth enabling this as well as a entirely new aspect of never knowing just how many of those lower tier assets would be burned to get the full length collectors editions residing at the pinnacle of the entire series everyone was racing for to accrue the lowest mints by being the earliest.
And what a resounding success the combination of these new release and gamified turned out to be. In all honesty, the reception from the community was absolutely amazing, and even we were blown away with how well the collection was received and with such compassion by the community at large towards our mission. Maybe it was the timing with the recent embarkation of the the Bitcoin price action, or maybe it was the good will of those that truly care that rallied around us in general, but the end result was upwards of 30,000 US raised presently in support of Haitian Roots boots on the ground efforts to provide food, shelter, and education to Haitian children in need. Of course the aim all along was to enable the funds to be used for philanthropic good, but having the timing work coincide perfectly to help set up the ‘I’m Not the Bubble’ Series One collection to be the new Bitcoin Anthem isn’t half bad either.
Allowing the prosperity pricing for the series a window to remain open for approximately 3 weeks, Uplift.Art decided to close out this special pricing window and send off the first batch of funds to Haitian Roots. Before doing so however, the added bonus was revealed that all those that held the special collectors editions of the NFT ‘I’m Not the Bubble’ assets could now for the first time in history access a correlated MP3 music file containing the complete audio file of that version that could be downloaded to any device to be played even when not connected to the blockchain. Another first and a very exciting prospect for us in particular, as we can see a real world application for a plethora of audio and video files of independent artists, musicians, producers, videographers, and film makers to name just a few.
Although the end to this prosperity pricing did not signal the end to the events revolving around the ‘I’m Not the Bubble’ Series One collection, the time had come to pay our gratitudes to the community who in so many ways take this event to the next level of success. December 23rd, 2020 then marked what the team has dubbed Uplift Moon Day whereby a new event allowing for the burning of 5 promotional community crate assets could be redeemed for the 4th full length music video released by the Uplfit.Art team alongside the MP3 download key, Mr. Spaceman.
Of course this is all just the beginning. Already we have plans for an upcoming January 15th auction for a 1 of 1 original Mr. Spaceman NFT where 50% of all proceeds will go towards helping Haitian Roots build a new school. As for the other 50%, as per the Uplift.Art business model allocation, the other 50% will be split between being utilized by Uplift.Art for general operational and upgrade costs alongside a portion to the artist enabling better all around incentivization of artists in general. To learn more about just how empowering NFT’s can be for both up and coming and established artists and musicians alike, check out the following interview with Uplift.Art’s very own mBlu and Claudia.
In the end the Uplift.Art model is proving to work so well that it has been decided to shift the paradigm of what UpliftNation was trying to achieve towards an accelerated and more realistic model for real world change.
Uplift.Art as it stands is creating a first of its kind triple-win situations for charitable projects, art collectors, and artists. We intend to use the power of blockchain to bring unique and verified genuine art of top artists to the blockchain. Art collectors will be able to invest in a great portfolio and see it rise in value while having fun. Artists will receive a fair share of profits and get in front of a whole new audience of art investors while aiding and supporting meaningful charity organizations and projects. Charitable and meaningful projects will get the funds they need to use in operating and gaining visibility from a segment of individuals who bought this arts and are interested in charity.
Although this may sound like a tall order, for those familiar with what we have accomplished in such as short period of time materializing the vision of what came from the Uplift spirit can testify to the fact that as it presently stands, this is pretty much with the exception of a few tweaks already a reality. And having this solid foundation in place is nothing but great as it will provide the strongest foundation we can ever actually hope for in regards to all of the amazing things soon to be revealed in 2021 and beyond.
On a final note shout out to all those who have helped in various forms along the way. For a road never travelled the amount of helping hands from way back in the day along the way has been absolutely astounding. To those all those individuals then, whether big or small with orders short or tall, from the bottom of our hearts a giant thanks for being you and all that you have done. For alone this journey would have been much slower and for sure a lot less fun. Until we have the pleasure to cross paths once again, do take care and enjoy all the beauty that life has to offer.
On behalf of the Uplift.Art team past, present, and to infinity and beyond,