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Client Love: Interview with ‘Urth’ Founder, Christian Gibson

  • 20 May 2022
  • Studio Legal

Written by Alyce Evans

During a road-tripping adventure from California to Patagonia in 2014, Urth was created. Born from a passion for photography and being in nature, the business has evolved and grown since then.

The first two pillars of the Urth business are Urth Shop, which sells cameras, lens and accessories, and Urth Magazine, which focuses on photography, film, travel and conservation.

Now, their latest venture, an NFT art gallery called Urth Art, sees the business expand into an exciting new realm.

This week, we interviewed one of Urth’s founders, Christian Gibson about how ‘Urth Art’ (and selling art through NFT’s) can benefit both artists and collectors. We also spoke about his inspiration, advice for those looking to pursue their passions and what he’s loving right now.

What inspires you?

A lot of things inspire me, whether it be art, nature, travel, technology or anything in between. I am most inspired in moments when I am dialed into the natural flow of the world, and many things can capture my attention enough to trigger that. I also know the things that kill my inspiration; feeling stressed, work burnout, when my body feels unhealthy, etc. 

I think it’s important to give yourself the time and space to stop and smell the roses, which is often easier said than done. I believe that staying inspired and creative is fundamental to the success of whatever it is I am working on, so I try to create space for these moments. The most foolproof methods that work for me are taking a holiday, being in the ocean, taking photos or going to an art gallery.

Tell us about your latest venture – Urth Art

Urth Art is the 3rd pillar in the Urth business model, the other two being Urth Shop and Urth Magazine.

Urth Art is a digital gallery where we are exhibiting and selling photography NFTs. Each NFT comes with the right to own a gallery grade physical print.

We are considering this initial release to be Urth Art V1, and we have a vision to expand our offering of NFTs into a broader range of art forms. We want to push the idea of a digital art gallery, creating new ways of experiencing and interacting with the art in a digital space.

How can artists benefit from selling real-life artwork (such as a painting, print or sculpture) through an NFT smart contract?

There are various benefits to offering real-life artworks that come with NFTs to both artists and collectors, the most notable being:

For artists: Royalties can be built into the NFT contract, so every time the artwork is resold into the future, the artist receives a commission of the sale (e.g. 10%). This unlocks future revenue streams for artists, making art a more viable career option than it has been in the past. 

For collectors: NFTs give a traceable history of ownership, reducing the problem of counterfeit art. This guaranteed authenticity creates more trust, which leads to higher artwork values, which in turn benefits artists through the royalties mentioned above.

There are challenges around linking physical artworks to an NFT, but with the right legal advice and contract written into the NFT, it is possible 🙂

Urth sells camera products, publishes a magazine and runs an NFT fine art gallery. What advice would you give to someone who has multiple passions they want to pursue professionally?

I don’t think it’s necessarily smart to pursue multiple passions professionally, it’s already hard enough being good at one thing. We are able to do this as these interests align with and add value to one another. We have also built an awesome team that can share the workload. 

If I was starting out and had multiple passions, but didn’t know which to pursue, I would try and discover which I was most passionate about. This needs to come from deep within, so meditate on it until the answer is clear. 

If you are going to spend 40-60 hours a week working on something, you better like what it is you are doing. When you like what you do, the hard times don’t feel quite as hard, and you will be able to put more effort into it, which leads to better results and more commercial success.

Once you have found commercial success and are able to start delegating tasks to your team, you can look to tackle your next passion 🙂

What is the one thing you are obsessed with / loving right now?

I am kind of obsessed with two things right now, Kanye West and Tezos NFTs. 

For some reason, I never got into Kanye’s music. I guess him just being a bit of a d***** put me off, and his career kicked off around the same time I stopped listening to commercial radio, so I was never that exposed to his music. But since watching his Netflix documentary ‘Jeen-Yuhs’, I have been listening to his albums on repeat and am a bit obsessed.

My other current obsession is Tezos NFTs. The art and community feel so authentic, which is refreshing compared to what I see on some of the other blockchains. I am super excited about digital art in general, and Tezos seems to be a great place to discover up and coming artists and purchase their work for a reasonable price.

Written by Alyce Evans

Further Information

Interested in the world of Urth? Explore Urth Art, Urth Shop and Urth Magazine.

If you’d like to learn more about NFTs check out our blog, ‘NFT Ownership: What Does That Actually Mean?’ . To further understand how NFTs can link to physical art works, have a read of Urth Magazine’s article, ‘Can Physical Works of Art Be Linked to NFTs?

Want to get to know some of our other talented and inspiring clients? Check out our other Client Love interviews here.

If you’re an artist, photographer, designer or creative and are looking for legal assistance relating to your business, NFTs or more, please contact us through our online form or via email at hello@studiolegal.com.au.

Photo courtesy of Urth, shared with their kind permission.