TernX @ HUGFest: Entrepreneurs & Rising NFT Artists Meet

The inaugural HUGFest brought together some of today's most inspiring creatives and entrepreneurs, including those in the NFT space. If you're encountering HUG for the first time, what you need to know is that it's an inclusive commmunity for artists and collectors. And while you may have missed out on the event itself, you can always find thousands of incredible artists on HUG anytime you wish to grow your collection or if you're an artist—get on board!

What is HUG?

HUG is a global community and platform for creators to promote their work and connect with other artists. At present, HUG is already home to over 20,000 artists across varying experience levels and anyone who create any kind of art can push that number to even greater heights by applying to secure their HUG Artist Profile.

As a community-curated platform, the artists that get featured in HUG are thoughtfully selected and reviewed by fellow artists and collectors. Also, on top of the opportunity to make new connections, a customizable HUG Artist Profile can help creators organize and consolidate their expanding portfolio across different platforms.

HUG is founded by Randi Zuckerberg, who is a former director of market development and spokesperson for Facebook—and yes, the sister of the social media giant's founder Mark Zuckerberg. She has sinced branched out to carve a successful career in tech while championing the role of women in the IT sector.

In HUG, she gets to bring two of her passions together: collecting art and uplifting creators in the digital space.

Aside from being an inclusive platform for creators, HUG offers free art education resources to its community as well as unique call out opportunities to work with industry leaders and mainstream media, all via it's HUG Studios program.

Rising NFT Artists_HUG Studios

What is HUGFest?

HUGFest served as an intersection of art, technology and entrepreneurship as it hosted over a thousand creatives, curators, collectors and entrepreneurs in its inaugural event at the Canvas 3.0 Gallery within the iconic Oculus World Trade Center in New York.

Many talented artists from all over the globe took the time to showcase their craft and the visitors shopped eagerly at the pop-up Artist Market. There were also live art demonstrations and exhibits throughout the all-day event. TernX, of course, joined the community in celebrating innovation and art.

TernX and Randi are not new to each other since the tech savvant is one of the parents who immediately fell in love with the TernX Carry On. "Anyone who's ever tried to push a toddler baby through an airport knows it's absolute chaos," she said in an interview with Europe's ByDesign TV before sharing how game-changing it is to have a stroller that folds into an actual carry on suitcase.

On the other hand, one of the standouts in the event is the continual emergence of NFT art whether its in fashion, AI or even ceramics. If you're new to this medium, then let's touch base on what NFT means and how it's changing the game for modern artists and entrepreneurs.

What does NFT stand for?

NFT stands for non-fungible token. Whereas "fungible" indicates that the asset can replaced by another identical item. More or less, "non-fungible" means the item is 1 of 1.

Rising NFT Artists_HUG Studios VIsionaries Program

What is NFT Art?

When it comes to NFTs, the digital product can be anything such as an artwork, music, an article and even memes. There's also an emerging market for "NFT-backed" ceramics, where your physical purchase is accompanied by a token of authenticity and virtual assets related to the product.

On a high level, most NFTs are protected via Ethereum, a decentralized blockchain with smart contract functionality. Ether, a cryptocurrency, and NFTs rest on the platform owing to its technology that keeps track of who’s in possession or trading the digital goods.

What Does an NFT Creator Do?

NFT creators predominantly come from photography, graphic design, illustration, music or writing background. But since they're doing their best work in a different medium—one that is still relatively new and divisive—it can't be helped that the general publc is still foreign to the portfolio of these wonderful artists.

Regardless, NFT is fast becoming a standard commodity in the digital age and the contemporary art space. And NFT artists are becoming more mainstream.

NFT artists, for that matter, are those who create NFTs. But beyond simply producing digital art, NFT creators take it a step further by encrypting their creations in blockchain technology. This means the artwork receives a token or certificate to mark its authenticity, and for the buyer, as often is the case, sole ownership to print the copy.

Rising NFT Artists_HUG Artist Profile Search

19 Rising NFT Artists to Look Out For

With AI going into full throttle and blockchain technology becoming more prominent in the digital space, it's only a matter of time before NFT artists make a bigger impact to the art world. In fact, some of the artists we're sharing today have already broke records and established themselves as some of the most sough-after digital artists in the world.

Jack Butcher

The UK-born Jack Butcher was the artist behind the breakthrough Checks VV non-fungible token (NFT) collection. He is also the founder of Visualize Value, an online platform that creates and sells digital art that mesh minimalist graphics with complex ideas. You can check Jack Butcher's HUG profile for more details.

Ed Balloon

Ed is a multidisciplinary artist best known in the NFT space for his Run Ed Collection. The Ethereum-based project features 1000 animated pieces blending stop motion, 2D and 3D animation, music and sound, starring his Ed B “The Puppet” animated character. You can check out his website to learn more about his ongoing projects.

Daniel Isles (DirtyRobot)

Isles is a Hokkaido-based illustrator and comic celebrated for his dynamic portfolio of vibrant illustrations combining eastern and western cultures.

He has also collaborated with kidrobot to bring for the limited edition VOID Half Ray Android Dunny collectible. You can visit DirtyRobot's HUGS profile for updates.

Grant Yun

Grant Riven Yun grew up in a family of artists, but his own work has been in-part influenced by his childhood experiences and video games.

His art is best characterised by his skillful use of negative space, neutral palettes and textures. Aside from impactful NFT artworks, Grant has a robust portfolio on visual art, digital artwork and generative art.

Guido Di Salle

Guido Di Salle made a name for himself as an accomplished photographer and instantly recognizable work for various mainstream media and distributors. In the digital world, he also dabbles in NFT and generative art to sell some of his 1/1 digital photos.

Sasha Stiles

Sasha Stiles is an award-winning language artist and AI researcher known for her pioneering experiments with generative literature and blockchain poetics.

In 2022, she became the first writer to publish AI-powered literature via a major auction house when her poem, “COMPLETION: When it’s just you,” sold at Christie’s.

Markus Magnusson (Motion Markus)

Magnusson is a Swedish motion designer and illustrator who have worked with clients like Google, ESPN and YouTube. In the NFT world, he is best known for his Invisible Friends collection, one of the most anticipated NFT drops leading to its launch.

Iman Europe

Iman Europe earned the spotlight with her empowering NFT music projects. She is also the founder of The Homies DAO, a community and platform advocating mental health and wellness for Web3 and NFT artists.


Beeple, an NFT artist and graphic designer, whose real name is Mike Winkelmann, put himself and NFT on the map when he sold his "Everydays: the First 5000 Days" for a then record $69.3 million.

His work in visual art also includes VJ Loops, which has some of the most widely used music kits with Creative Commons License.


Trevor Jones excels as a digital artist by combining his art with technology, including NFTs, AI and augmented reality. He entered the NFT space via “EthBoy”, his collaborative work with NFT legend lotta Money.


FEWOCiOUS is known in the art world for his contemporary art, limited fashion pieces and digital art.

He's had some of the most successful NFT auctions in recent times, including his FEWOWORLD “paint drop” and his collaborative “Fabricated Fairytales” collection.


PAK's record-breaking sale of ‘The Merge’ for $91.8 million is the most expensive NFT to date and on its own a record for an artwork sold publicly by a living artist.

PAK, who maintains an anonymous identity, is also credited with being the founder and design lead for the Undream studio, as well as the AI program and platform Archillect.


XCOPY fuses digital art with themes of death, chaos and crypto. He is regarded as one of the key influencers in the NFT space beginning from his involvement in the medium's early days. XCOPY spent a decade as a prolific creator on Tumblr before carving his place in the NFT digital realm.


Hackatao is a collaboration between Sergio Scalet and Nadia Squarci, considered pioneers of Crypto Art NFTs in Italy.

Their signature work is called "Podmorks", which are totetmic figures with the pair's iconic and innovative art style.


Michah Dowbak aka Mad Dog Jones is a multidisciplinary artist who has created artworks for Run The Jewels, Deadmau5, Jabbawockeez and Maroon 5.

REPLICATOR, which has the ability to generate new unique NFTs, was his breakthrough in the NFT market when it was sold for $4.1 million to the winning bidder.

Cath Simard

Cath Simard is a Canadian-born photographer, digital artist and a prominent figure in NFT photography.

She is the owner of some of the most innovative and distinguishable photos that have been published and shared online including her #freehawaiiphoto, whose original copy became her first NFT.

Emonee LaRussa

Emonee LaRussa, founder and CEO of Pamanama Studios LLC, is one of NFT's fastest rising artists in motion graphics.

Prior to this, she made music visuals for prominent artists like Kanye West, Jhene Aiko and John Legend, among others. She also created the NFT collection for the 2022 GRAMMYs, officially known as the 64th GRAMMY Awards.

Damien Hirst

Damien Hirst made headlines when he symbolically burned 1,000 physical artworks in front of NFT buyers for his "The Currency" collection. He is set to feature in Netflix's “NTF:WTF?” documentary film from BAFTA-winning filmmaker David Shulman.

Tyler Hobbs

Tyler Hobbs develops and programs custom algorithms that are used to generate visual imagery. His work in generative art is considered highly influential to the medium, especially as we head onto the future where generative art is only gaining more value over collectible NFTs.

Rising NFT Artists_HUG Free Art Education Resources

TernX Showcasing the Entrepreneurism Spirit

TernX is definitely a big fan of HUGFest and the HUG community. In HUGFest, we cherish the opportunity to embrace the entrepreneurial spirit alongside the HUG community of innovators and artists. In particular, we came away looking forward to the rise of NFT art and its growing influence in the art world market.

For more information on your favourite creators, be it digital or physical, come and explore HUG's artist community to discover new artists and entrepreneurs.


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