After making a series of pixelated artworks called Weird Whales and selling non-fungible tokens during the school holidays, a 12-year-old kid from London gained almost £290,000. (NFTs). Artwork may be “tokenized” using NFTs to generate a digital certificate of ownership that can be purchased and sold.
In most cases, they do not provide the customer with the original artwork or the copyright to it.
Benyamin Ahmed is storing his profits in Ethereum, the crypto-currency in which they were purchased.
This implies they might move up or down in value, and if the digital wallet in which he keeps them is hacked or compromised, he won’t have any recourse from the authorities. He hasn’t had a regular bank account since he was a teenager.
Benyamin’s peers are ignorant of his newfound crypto-wealth, despite the fact that he has created YouTube videos about his pastime, which he likes in addition to badminton, swimming, and karate.
“My advice to other children that maybe want to get into this space is don’t force yourself to do coding, maybe because you get peer pressured – just as if you like cooking, do cooking, if you like dancing, do dances, just do it to the best of your ability,” he said.
At the age of five and six, Benyamin’s father, Imran, a software engineer who works in conventional banking, pushed Benyamin and his brother, Yousef, to begin coding. The kids have had access to a large network of technological professionals for guidance and assistance, but he is incredibly proud of them.
“It was a little bit of a fun exercise – but I picked up on really early that they were really receptive to it and they were really good,” Imran said.
“So then we started getting a little bit more serious – and now it’s every single day… but you can’t cram this stuff, you can’t say I’m going to learn coding in three months.”
He says that he contributed 20 to 30 minutes to the coding exercises each day.
Benyamin’s second digital-art collection, Weird Whales, comes after a less successful Minecraft-inspired series.
This time, he utilized his own program to generate the collection of 3,350 emoji-type whales, drawing inspiration from a well-known pixelated whale meme picture and a famous digital-art style.
“It was interesting to see all of them hatch, as they appeared on my screen slowly generating,” he said.
Benyamin has already begun work on his third collection, which will be based on superheroes.
He also wants to create an “underwater game” based on whales.
Imran is “100% sure” his kid hasn’t infringed any copyright laws, and he’s hired attorneys to “check” his work and provide him guidance on how to patent his own ideas.
The present vogue for NFTs has created a schism in the art world. Artists believe it’s a good way to supplement their income. And there are several accounts of astronomically high sales. However, there is some doubt as to whether they are a viable long-term investment.
Buying them made “no sense,” according to former Christie’s auctioneer Charles Allsopp.
“The idea of buying something which isn’t there is just strange,” he said earlier this year.
“People who invest in it are slight mugs – but I hope they don’t lose their money.”