NFTs, Generative Art

Artwork and NFTs: How Many Traits Are Needed for a 10k Generative NFT PFP Set?

Ready to do your art? Here’s what you need to know.

Photo by Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash

The short answer: About 200 would be great. But, if you’re an artist about to prepare artwork for a generative NFT drop, let’s have a deeper look at that answer. (See what I did there, though? I gave the final answer in the first sentence! How many articles do that??!)

Before I go on with the long answer: If you’re an artist planning a generative NFT drop, here are some guidelines on how to set things up in your Photoshop / Procreate files layer-wise:

Okay, now for the longer answer…

In a generative NFT set — specifically, the of the profile picture (PFP) type — you generally will have properties and traits. Properties are basically categories — like background, skin color, shirt, necklace, mouth, eyes, hair, hat. And traits are the individual members of those property groups.

The math for calculating the number of possible combinations is simple: Take the number of traits within each property group, and multiply those numbers by each other. So, for example, if you have just five properties (background, skin color, shirt, face, and hat), and you have 10 traits within each, then the math is ‘10 x 10 x 10 x 10 x 10’ — or 100,000.

Even with that small example of 5 properties and 50 total traits, you can see that you already have 10x more than you technically need for a 10k generative set. But, as you would see if you actually used those numbers, your variety would be lacking. And additionally, you wouldn’t have left much room at all for a hierarchy of rarity.

Questions I Get a Lot:

  • What should the minimum number of properties be? Well, again, there are no rules here — only math and aesthetics. So, the answer I’ll give is my own opinion based on my preferences. Unless you have unusual circumstances, I can’t…