Zeneca is an NFT collector, founder of ZenAcademy and prominent thought leader within the NFT space. Driven by his conviction in the NFT space he founded ZenAcademy to cultivate a community and empower those within with tools and opportunities, in web3. He has made a significant impact in the space by educating and guiding people interested in learning more about the world of NFTs.
Could you tell us about your story and how you got introduced to the NFT space?
Prior to NFTs I was a professional poker player for 17 years. That in and of itself is a whole story hah. A lot of poker players make the transition from poker → crypto, so I got introduced by some friends.
Dabbled with crypto in 2017 and then left in 2018. In early 2021 they told me about NFTs and my initial reaction was of course that it's all a scam, but after coming around, I dove head first all in. NFTs and my first reaction was of course it's all a hoax, but after turning around I dove right in.
What inspired you to start collecting NFTs?
Honestly the reason I got in first was to make money, and that was my primary goal for a long time. Eventually I fell in love with the art, the artists, and the communities, and that made me want to collect more.
What are the things you consider before buying an NFT? Do you look at any specific metrics or signals?
It depends if it's as a collector vs investor. The former I simply look for what I like. The latter, I take a lot of things into consideration — the team (and/or artist) behind a project, what they're trying to do, how much attention the NFT is likely to generate in the future (attention is everything), etc.
Is there any NFT category (pfps, music, photography, 1/1 art, generative art, etc.) that you normally gravitate towards and why?
I'm obsessed with gen art because I think it's the perfect blend of Tech & Art, and beautifully utilizes blockchain technology in a way that nothing else does.
Can you tell us about ZenAcademy (ZA) and what led you to start your own NFT project after starting out as a collector in the field?
ZA started out because I wanted to do something other than just flipping/trading in this space, and because I had started to gain traction as a content creator. I saw that there was a void in strong educational content / communities, and wanted to fill that void.
What has been the most rewarding part of being involved in the NFT space?
The close friends I have made.
What is the best advice you have received?
Nuseir, the founder of NasDaily, once said something about having "haters". The tl;dr is that if you go to school with 1,000 people, there's probably one kid that dislikes you. If you have 1,000 followers, there's probably one that takes issue with you. That's 0.01%.
At 100k followers, the % can remain the same, but all of a sudden you now have 100 people who hate you. Often a vocal minority cuts deeper than an overwhelming majority, and it takes work to ignore them.