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How To Create and Sell 3D NFT [Beginner-Friendly Guide]
Updated · Aug 18, 2023
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The invention of non-fungible tokens (NFTs) has answered the prayers of content creators plagued by piracy.
But if there’s one group that stands to benefit the most from them, it’s 3D graphic artists.
So, how can you make a bank with these revolutionary digital assets?
Keep reading to learn how to get started and how to sell as many as possible.
What Is a 3D NFT?
A three-dimensional non-fungible token is an NFT derived from a tokenized 3D asset.
If you’re not familiar with NFTs, we got you covered. Let me give you the lowdown:
NFTs are one-of-a-kind digital assets created with the same type of programming that has given rise to crypto.
What separates NFTs from typical digital assets is that nobody can replicate them. They’re non-fungible, so they’re not interchangeable.
They contain unique data used for authenticating their owners. Such information doesn’t lend itself to manipulation, rendering it impossible to counterfeit.
Like other crypto assets, NFTs reside on blockchains, especially Ethereum, the busiest of them all. These decentralized distributed public ledgers facilitate transactions and perpetually record them in an immutable way.
In other words, 3D NFT crypto assets are engineered to safeguard the owners’ property rights. NFTs can change hands countless times, but their ownership history is always verifiable through the blockchain.
In a world where everything is an NFT, nobody can freely download, duplicate, edit, and distribute digital assets at will.
With NFTs, you can trust the system to prevent forgery. That’s why they can be excellent assets through which to own, trade, and build wealth.
So, what assets can become NFTs?
Anything, including physical art and music.
Naturally, early NFTs are 2D as they come from generic media formats. But now that the crypto industry has matured enough, 3D is the new frontier.
Compared to 2D graphics, 3D ones are more useful in industries like gaming or film and are harder to produce.
Because of their utility and creation process, 3D non-fungible tokens are generally more valuable. Among the popular three-dimensional NFT projects are The Sandbox, MeSkullz, Nouns 3D, and Meebits.
How To Generate 3D NFTs
Three-dimensional NFTs are all the rage because of the metaverse.
Many creators are bent on turning the internet into one immersive world accessible through virtual and augmented reality headsets. For this reason, 3D non-fungible tokens are usually gaming assets.
Having said that, digital art is also a prime catalyst for three-dimensional NFT development. The advent of Ethereum’s ERC-721 NFT token standard has allowed digital artists to finally have their moment in the sun.
So, how can you get started?
Consider these tips on how to generate an NFT and begin selling:
Create Marketable 3D Assets
Much has been said about NFTs selling like hotcakes. But it would be wrong to assume that just about any design would fetch a fortune.
There’s no telling which NFTs will be fashionable tomorrow, nor is there a guaranteed recipe for success. However, you can learn a thing or two from history.
Historical sales data shows that NFTs with technostalgia aesthetics generate tremendous buyer interest.
That’s probably because many crypto users grew up around VCRs, cassette tapes, and diskettes. So, for the time being, retro designs are a slam dunk.
Furthermore, some collectors love futuristic and sci-fi themes.
Trends come and go. But if this one persists, you may strike gold by focusing on either end of the spectrum.
Moreover, there’s a market that goes nuts about digital 3D art.
Choose a Popular NFT Marketplace
As a rule of thumb, the biggest NFT marketplaces give you the best opportunity to put more eyeballs on your designs. Little-known platforms can’t match the level of exposure the likes of OpenSea, Rarible, SuperRare, and Foundation can bring.
Then again, not a single major-league NFT marketplace is right for everyone. You ought to know the types of users each one attracts to maximize your chances of success.
In a nutshell, OpenSea lists the highest number of non-fungible tokens because of its status as a first mover. A generalist, it features numerous categories of static and animated NFTs to display as many items as possible.
Aspiring to dethrone OpenSea is Mintable. Also built on top of Ethereum, this Mark Cuban–backed platform supports ERC-721 tokens and takes pride in its intuitive interface.
Driven by its community, Rarible is for users who love interactivity. Its social media function empowers marketplace participants to share thoughts and comments on listed items.
SuperRare sets itself apart by displaying limited-edition digital 2D and 3D art. Built like a social media platform, it’s by invitation only. So, you must have an existing artist vouch for you to join.
Foundation is another invitation-only platform. It has carved out a niche for itself as an NFT marketplace for independent creators.
Your marketplace choice would dictate the fees you have to contend with. Likewise, it would determine your earning potential since it might set your sale price and royalty payment cut.
Pick the Right Crypto Wallet
Not every crypto wallet supports NFTs. And not all NFT-optimized wallets may work with your chosen marketplace.
Your safest bet is an Ethereum wallet that supports assets built using ERC-20, ERC-721, and ERC-1155 token standards. Otherwise, you would have a hard time selling to most buyers.
In addition, pay attention to crypto wallet interoperability. Again, your choice should be compatible with your preferred 3D NFT platform. This way, you can fund your wallet and easily do business.
Security matters too. The most important wallet features to look for are a seed phrase, biometric-powered login, and auto-lock.
In case of technical problems, ensure your crypto wallet provider extends convenient and fast support.
Crypto wallet vendors may impose different charges for their services. So, study their fee structure to anticipate your future costs.
Of all crypto wallets out there, most NFT creators use Coinbase Wallet, MetaMask, and Enjin.
To mint NFTs, your wallet should have enough crypto to pay for the computing power you need.
By and large, ETH is what you’d need to convert your 3D game assets or artworks into NFTs on Ethereum. If you create your NFTs elsewhere, you’ll need the native coin of the marketplace’s blockchain.
For instance, you must stock up on XTZ to mint NFTs on Tezos.
Depending on the marketplace, you may have to pick up the tab on certain transactions. For example, OpenSea requires sellers to shoulder the gas fees when accepting offers.
Upload Your Work
Once you have a loaded crypto wallet, you’re set to mint your NFTs.
Look for the Create button on your chosen marketplace, and then upload individual files to your 3D collection.
You have to confirm that the content is your intellectual property. If it belongs to someone else, ensure you have the copyright holder’s blessing before creating the NFT.
Normally, you have to pay the network fee outright. However, the marketplace may defer the payment and initiate the transaction only when a sale goes down. Called lazy minting, this procedure renders the NFT available off-chain until a buyer comes along.
Once your 3D NFT art sees the light of day, it’s time to complement your visual with text. Creativity is paramount when writing your work’s title and description, but you have to be strategic in the latter.
Killer NFT descriptions are vivid yet mysterious, personal yet inclusive, and informative yet brief.
Crafting a balanced description is challenging. But here’s a helpful guide to point you in the right direction.
- Use Sensory Words. Powerful adjectives like dazzling, deafening, icy, rancid, and bittersweet can tickle the imagination, providing a compelling prelude to your NFTs. No wonder marketing pros are allergic to bland terms.
- Tell a Story. Opening yourself up to potential buyers can help break down their rational barriers. Give them insight into your inspiration and struggles to paint a moving narrative of your work.
- Appeal to Emotion. Taking the logical route may be unwise, as hype and speculation drive crazy NFT prices. Instead, accentuate the intangibles, like exclusivity, that come with your digital assets to put the heart in the driver’s seat.
- Be Generic. When trying to impress art aficionados, writing boring, straightforward descriptions is the opposite of what you should do. If your NFT characters feature imagery of primates, don’t just say gorillas.
- Sound Technical. NFT buyers don’t care about what’s under the hood. They just want to know the deeper meaning behind the crypto collectibles. To connect with your target audience personally, speak their language, consider humor, or focus on their aspirations.
- Write Too Many Words. No internet user has the patience to read long-winded text on electronic devices. Brevity is necessary to send your message across despite buyers’ short attention spans.
List Your Items for Sale
As a creator of freshly minted NFTs, you can list them anytime you want. Just look for the Sell button.
In general, you have two options: sell your items for fixed prices or put them on the block. Choosing the former gives you more control; going with the latter lets you test the market.
Auctions with time limits are another viable option. If you don’t let the clock expire, you can pull the trigger on the sale when a satisfactory bid comes.
How To Create an NFT Collection
There’s a science behind successful NFT collections.
To stand out from the growing number of creators in the crypto space, follow these pieces of advice:
Think of a Theme
Before grouping NFTs, make sure there’s a common denominator between them. A good 3D collection contains tokens of the same artistic style, but each one has unmistakable character.
It’s up to you to decide how much your designs should differ. But make sure none of them sticks out like a sore thumb.
Double-Down on Rarity
By definition, NFTs are individually scarce. But to make unique assets even more valuable, you can borrow a page from the book of BoredApeYatchClub.
In this world-famous NFT collection, just a few simian avatars depict characteristics like biker vests and red fur. Such oddities tend to fetch higher prices.
Don’t Forget About Utility
Are your NFT characters supposed to be collectibles? Or are they a means to an end in video games?
If the demand for your assets isn’t driven by utility, their value will more or less be at the mercy of speculators.
Determine a Suitable Price
Pricing individual NFTs can be tricky.
The industry has seen non-fungible tokens change hands for insane amounts of money. But you can’t predict how generous or tightfisted the market will be in the future.
To avoid asking for too little or too much money, find out how much similar 3D NFT crypto assets are selling for.
Alternatively, sell your items at auctions and/or be open to offers from buyers.
Add Value Post-Publication
Depending on the marketplace, you may be able to throw in unlockable content to sweeten up the deal. This bonus can be a high-resolution, printed, or physical copy of your work.
Likewise, you may be able to render your NFT resellable and/or its copyrights transferable.
Place a Premium on Promotion
Being an NFT creator means drawing people’s attention to your collection to make a sale.
To cut through the noise, you need to leverage social media. If you haven’t used Instagram, Discord, Reddit, and Telegram, you should consider getting onto these platforms to spread the word. You have to step up your hashtag game too.
If you’re willing to spend a bit of money to boost your NFT collection’s exposure, invest in influencer marketing. By hiring the right influencers, you can sell your NFTs quickly at a high price through social proof.
Necessary Hardware and Software for 3D NFTs
Converting 3D graphics into non-fungible tokens on common NFT marketplaces is free. But the software license you need to model 3D assets may cost money.
Fortunately, the industry’s leading renderers are usually part of a 3D modeling software suite and/or compatible with third-party design tools.
Regarding hardware specs, the amount of processing power and clock speed you need would depend on your software. So, you’ve got to check out what your prospective app’s minimum system requirements are.
But 3D modeling programs generally work well on the latest Windows editions. Some are compatible with macOS and Linux too.
3D non-fungible tokens are the wave of the future.
The recent NFT mania may be over, but the revolution has just begun. Unless an asteroid hits the Earth, tomorrow’s copyrighted material will almost certainly be crypto.
So, stick around, polish your skills, build your reputation as a 3D artist, and master the space. With perseverance and good timing, NFTs could make you filthy rich at best and give you financial security at worst.
Can you make money selling NFT art?
Yes, you can!
By June 2022, the most expensive NFT sold had been The Merge, which fetched a staggering $91.8 million.
How much do NFT artists make?
By March 3, 2022, NFTs had been sold for less than $2,000 on average. This figure represents at least a 71% drop from the all-time high of nearly $6,900 recorded two months prior.
As an NFT creator, you can’t pocket 100% of the sale proceeds. NFT marketplaces charge service fees on transactions, which are usually 2.5%.
Plus, you have to pay an ever-changing network fee when minting an NFT, which goes to blockchain miners (or validators).
After the initial sale, you may earn passive income in royalties when your work gets resold. So the more your NFTs get traded, the fatter your wallet becomes.
How to sell 3D models [as NFT]
- Convert your 3D assets into non-fungible tokens on NFT marketplaces.
- Write compelling NFT titles and descriptions.
- Add more value by unlocking content or offering transferable copyrights to attract buyers and/or to justify a high price.
- Figure out suitable fixed prices or start auctions.
- Promote your NFT collection through social media or hire an influencer.
How much does it cost to create an NFT collection?
If you already have digital assets, you can turn them into non-fungible tokens on 3D NFT marketplaces for free.
However, you have to drop a certain amount of crypto to pay for network fees. They go to blockchain network participants like Ethereum miners, who spend computing power to mint your NFTs.
Network fees are fluid. Since a blockchain network’s processing power is limited, the fee could skyrocket when the demand is high.
On July 3, 2022, the average gas fee on Ethereum was just $1.57. On May 1, 2022, this figure reached almost $197.
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