CAN Review – petStarChippy creates very distinctive animations that feature recurring ‘virtual pets’ in a 3D aesthetic that takes inspiration from a childhood love of Sega games and Super Smash. The resulting artwork combines intricately detailed 3D compositions with a slightly pixelated/blocky rendering that produces an intimate and very compelling quality that is playful and also incredibly endearing. The characters portrayed have a real sense of ‘life’ in them and each one draws the viewer into the retro sci-fi/fantasy world that is petStar.
In ‘petStar.0017 – chipFlip’, one of the characters is in their virtual cage, while another skateboards past them while doing a trick on their board. The interplay between the two characters is a joy to watch, and we are also left wondering why one of the characters is free to roam and play, while the other remains in their cubic home.
In the final animation campfire, two of the ‘chippy’ characters are joined by another character who can fly with the aid of propellors on their head. The scene is beautifully lit by a roaring camp fire and everything from the grass, flowers and trees retain the same compelling blend of detail and 80’s pixelated aesthetic.
petStarChippy has some interesting views on the current NFT landscape, and the following quote neatly puts those thoughts into perspective:
i believe people will gravitate towards valuable work.. but that value is not necessarily going to be a monetary one. Make something special. make friends. <3 Maybe it sounds dumb from the guy making little virtual pets but i hope it means something to ppl. 😀petStarChippy interview
What is your background as an artist in general?
I’m a sorta 3d generalist these days. I was working a bit in motion graphics, a little in personal animation practice, and then most recently exclusively in music videos. The pandemic kinda created a need in the world of music videos for animators, and i was just in the right place at the right time. It’s the most fun work i’ve ever done.
What is your overall process in generating art?
I use blender, and i use after effects. for petStar, I’ve been making daily work.. I really just wake up and try to imagine something new every day. So far that’s worked !
How would you describe your art in your own words?
hmm. my work on petStar : i would describe as “a retro-futuristic fantasy shown the the lens of a simple virtual pet.” though sometimes i just say “cute but kinda funny lil dudes.”
Favourite artists / influences?
overall my favorite artists are musicians and filmmakers. I’m really influenced by early synthesizer music like Mort Garson’s Plantasia, and filmmakers like David Lynch. Also, if its not obvious I also grew up on sega games and super smash .
How did you discover the new blockchain world of Crypto Art and NFTs in general?
An online friend of mine sent a discord i’m in a link to HeN. I was not a fan of NFTs in general,, but this site really sparked my interest.
Has the digital nature of cryptoart NFTs changed how you approach your art practice?
In this case, yes. I wanted to make something special for people to *have*. I saw what was going on in the market, and I feel as though I responded with my own idea. Chippy is not a collectible, or a trading card. There’s not an exact system of scarcity and value. an AI doesn’t generate them. No shade to projects that work that way, but they already exist. I wanted to create Art, and not just Tokens. I want to stick to this. Again, it’s no shade to anyone else. I just see what’s possible with nfts, and chippy is secretly my way of testing these waters. The thinking is as follows: does crypto-art have to be “good art” to be valuable? no. This has been proven over and over. My big question, is in what other ways (besides the inherit artificial scarcity) can we give our work “value”? If a piece can show you a moment of calm, or a minute of humor, or nostaliga, … will that become more valuable? What does it mean to own a piece of art that you think is cool vs a piece that you *love*? Sounds deep, but it’s not that deep. I just find it interesting ! Owning your art = having a connection to your collection.
What if anything, has surprised you about this new area of art practice?
People on H=N are so cool. lots of twitter heads will have you believe that NFTs are the devil. But a lot of them are simply not. I hope to expand peoples understanding of ownership of art, connection to digital work etc. I’m honestly shocked that anyone wants to hear what i have to say . but i guess i say it through a cute little dude… so they listen 😀
How would you like the field of cryptoart and nfts to evolve over time?
plz be good to the artists making a small but decent living on H=N. Big fish will come over, I know it. just don’t leave lil chippy behind !
How can access and information to this new field of art practice be encouraged?
Don’t make bad NFTs. Sell your work for cheap. Buy and promote people who are pushing the platform in the direction you believe in. Artists, stick together ! Let’s push this thing into new territory.
Anything you’d like to say that this form hasn’t covered?
I can be a bit critical of some of the things i see in the NFT world. But I know we’re all just figuring it out. This is all new. i believe people will gravitate towards valuable work.. but that value is not necessarily going to be a monetary one. Make something special. make friends. <3 Maybe it sounds dumb from the guy making little virtual pets but i hope it means something to ppl. 😀