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Behind the JPEG: Galbraith.eth
The NFT storyteller
Who is Galbraith? I heard his name was Richard but prefers the name Ric, maybe Galbatron? Nonetheless, he is a loyal Punk holder amongst many other collectibles found in the Metaverse. He has ventured almost everywhere in the social media space, therefore it is no surprise that he gravitated to the NFT world so early back in 2017. Since then, he has established his writing, ideas, and stories working with some of the most high-profile creators out there, even showcasing his own NFT projects with the Tales of the Glitch and Punk Fiction. If you have a project and are in need of a story, look no further than this man!
Who is Galbraith?
Richard has worked in a number of fields including marketing, advertising, promotions, and social media engagement. Here he has been the driving force behind the implementation of campaigns, the production of, magazines, novels, music albums, art exhibitions, workshops, events, gigs, films, websites, and everything alike. In essence, he is a social media guru and has been perfecting his writing for over 20 years! Working across the board for well-known corporate businesses as well as smaller companies, Ric has a wealth of experience under his belt. In addition to this, he has been exposed to an array of cultures working in Japan as an English teacher for 18 months. Here he resided in a tranquil town on the southern island of Kyushu. As well as this, he worked and lived in Denmark for four years with Lego Group as a social media strategist. While he enjoyed both experiences for different reasons, the journey was not easy and with the difficulties that he endured along the way, he has learned a number of things about himself, namely a sense of freedom and thankfulness.
But where have his endeavors taken him more recently? At heart, Richard is a storyteller, it is in his blood and it is his passion. From writing short stories to even writing novels, he is well equipped and articulate. His words flow seamlessly and the narratives that he creates are enticing. Foregrounding images to fuel his story, he is able to verify the saying ‘a picture paints a thousand words, he just does the writing part! To put into perspective how extensive his writing background is, in 2009 he completed a 90,000-word novel, which was preceded by an interactive art, music, and literature exhibition held in London over seven days.
Since finding his way into the NFT scene through Beeple back in 2018, Richard has collaborated with a number of exciting projects and people. From writing the EtherTales for BakaArts, the Punks Comics for PixelVault, to the Cycle of the Shroom for Stefan Gorssenhalbuer, he has been able to world build, develop narratives, pursue storytelling, and continue his love for sci-fi writing. Furthermore, the NFT space has enabled him to showcase his own projects as with the ‘Tales from the Glitch’, a novel that he began in Japan, but has since refined and developed more recently. Journey into the creation of his fictional Multiverse that integrates crypto art, soundscapes, and storytelling. With multiple volumes and stories on the way, this collaborative piece of artwork was his genesis and his own personal contribution to the space, a historical drop! On Thursday, he dropped his eagerly anticipated TFTG collaboration that featured Claire Silver’s artwork as well as sound from Alpha Centauri Kid. The story, ‘Lucian Candidates’ reflects on the love that the Lucians can give, how their love is unbreakable, how it is godly and pure. The artwork was quickly snatched up by the avid NFT collector Sergito who was thrilled to add the piece to his collection. Richard is quickly proving his capabilities from the production to the writing, his stories will continue to grow no doubt!
Richard recently dropped and sold his eagerly anticipated ‘Punk Fiction’ which stars his Crypto Punk in cartoon form. Uzi in hand, blood-splattered shirt, and shades covering his death-ridden eyes. The sun is coming up, but he ain’t done killing bad guys yet. The first episode of Punk Fiction was dropped via Foundation which resulted in an exhilarating bid war between two collectors! Each 1/1 piece reveals its own unique story in addition to collaborative art, and voice acting. With 5 stories per season, expect to see, and hear some serious action in violent and retro fashion! With a roadmap that rewards holders with physical copies and NFT airdrops, as well as a chance to feature in the story yourself, the future is looking bright for Punk Fiction!
I wanted to find out more about the storyteller that is Galbraith and how his career started, his journey, and what he plans for the future! Check out this exciting interview below with the man himself!
You’re specialised in marketing and social media management. Did you ever expect that you would find yourself in the NFT space?
Ohhh, well, if you’d said to me in 2017 when things were just kicking off ‘there’s this cool new thing called an NFT that basically helps you create provenance for digital artists using the blockchain and loads of other awesome stuff can be done’ then I would have very much responded ‘tell me more’. As even back then I was doing a lot of writing based on digital art, photography and such and followed a bunch of the – now – industry leaders on IG. This was also when I first started getting into crypto, aped into BTC and ETH, then subsequently lost it all during the bear market up until late last year, luckily I was a HODLer so I made it all back, but I sold way too soon, anyway that’s a different story. The general idea is that, yes, as a sci-fi writer, early adopter, marketer, community manager, etc, etc, I definitely would have got into this as soon as had known about it, which turned out was December last year when Beeple first started posting about it.
You currently work as a social media manager outside of the NFT world, how do you balance your time between the both?
Well, I’ve been a social media strategist for about 15 years now for all sorts of agencies and brands, and I’ve been a writer and collaborator for about 20 years now, so my work / life / creative balance has always worked around that. I use my days for ‘work work’ and I use my evenings for writing and everything else. I lead quite a particular lifestyle that facilitates this, but I won’t go into that now. Luckily, being in social media means there is somewhat of a crossover between my day job and the NFT world, i.e. I’m online all day every day anyway, and I’m literally paid to know what are the latest trends and technologies online, so that helps too.
You have published a variety of forms of writing, but when did you first find yourself towards creative writing and what inspired you to do so?
Ever since I can remember I’ve been a storyteller. My first real memory is going away on an overnight school trip, maybe when I was 9 or 10, and we were in small rooms with bunk beds, my friends would ask me to tell them stories and I would get a torch and just make up stories late into the night, literally just telling stories as I went and they’d all be huddled round in fascination. From there it lead into writing, and then into journalism and then into fiction. Problem is, I’ve always been a very good storyteller, this hasn’t always translated well into writing however. Took me a while to be able to combine the two, but with lots of practice I’ve got there finally (I hope!)
Can you describe the environment that you are in when you are most creative and focused?
I love being in small cafes, it sounds cliché but it’s what I’ve generally always had to do as I’ve always had shared accommodation up until more recent years when I lived in Denmark and now back in the UK. So my room was never a very productive space, like a lot of young people living in London, I’d use the late night cafes and bars to write in, and this kinda stuck. I have an awesome apartment and really great home office set up now though, so it makes it much easier to read and write at my place.
What brought you to the NFT scene as a writer?
Well, just seemed like a natural fit. I’ve been doing art + fiction + sound collaborations for years, since my first novel was released in 2009, and for that I produced a collaborative project that brough 5 bands and 5 artists together around 5 themes of the novel, love, anger, madness, jealousy and desire. Each one received a 2,000 word extract, and they then went off and made something. I released a 72 page art book, 5 track music album, 90,000 word novel, and we had a 7 minute short film and a 7 day interactive art, literature and sound exhibition in central London. So, as time moved on, I continued to do collaborations, then in 2018 I reached out to Beeple to ask if I could write sci-fi stories based on his work, and in his imitable style, he was like ‘FUCK YEA DUDE’ so that’s when the NEON & CONCRETE project came about. Mike and I remain friendly to this day, but we were regularly in touch back then and he was / is such an awesome guy. So when his first round of NFTs dropped, I had interest, then when his second round dropped, I aped in and got one. From that point on I’ve been hooked, and as a person that knew the digital art space, had already collaborated with big names within it, and was a solid sci-fi writer, I was able to then start producing my own projects, and advising artists on storytelling, writing and narrative development.
When did you first start collecting? Do you have a favourite collectible, what are the prerequisites that draw you towards collections?
Well, like above, I got my Beeple INTO THE ETHER on 12/12/21, a date I’ll always remember! I ended up selling far too soon – we’ve all got these stories – but I started out by collecting a lot of art on NiftyGateway from artists who I was a fan of for years, Mad Dog Jones, Fvckrender, Bill Ellis, all these guys I collected, and now I’m quite friendly with some of them too! I eventually ended up selling pretty much all my NG collection to fund buying my punk, and the rest is history. My punk is definitely my favourite collectible, followed closely by my Ape of course!
Can you explain the premise of the tales of the glitch, what is the message that underlies the stories and what can we expect in the next volume?
Ohhh, well, the idea for Tales From The Glitch came from an old novel that I started writing years ago when living in Japan, then stalled when I got to the third chapter. The idea behind it, is what would you do to obtain perfection, basically. I won’t go into the whole narrative of the project in too much detail, but it’s essentially driven by a benevolent AI called The Citizizen, that facilitates access to the multiverse. The ‘Core Verse’ that the characters in the ongoing story belong to, have all sorts of different roles, but one of the main ones is to be a Fractal, and be sent into different pockets of the multiverse to create perfect realities for people of the Core Verse. Literally billions of Fractals are sent into various places within the multiverse to build and develop perfect places for Core Verse inhabitants. There’s a lot more to it, than that, but that’s the general idea, and as a Fractal, the more ‘Verses’ you travel to, and the more successful you are at coming back, the greater your chances are of being given your perfect state. The next volume is current in production, and features a Lucian Candidate, these are people who are blessed with knowing the ‘Soul of the AI’ and because they know the love of the Citizizen – essentially a god – they can help cure and heal the Fractals, after they come back from traversing the plane cosmic. As you can imagine, traveling between the multiverse takes it out of you, so you need people to help repair the Fractals, who have gone through a lot of training not to ‘Splinter’ which is when their minds crack from the multiverse travel. So, the project is built around the stories of the various people and their roles within this massive world that I’ve developed over years and started off as a novel idea!
You are leading the way for writers with drops such as Cycle of the shroom, the ether tales and punk comic. Do you see room for expansion for writers in the NFT space?
I’m doing my part certainly, I’m not sure if I’m leading the way! There’s so many amazing writers out there, and we’re all doing our part to see how we can develop writing and fiction and storytelling in this space. Some people are great with code and smart contracts, others are amazing with poems and such, my role – if anything – is with collaborations, people have told me they see this as a bit of a ‘super power’ but it’s something I’ve always been able to do and enjoy so it’s the path I’ve chosen. There’s so much room here for all of us, there’s so much to do, so many amazing people doing all sorts of crazy inventive things every single day it’s impossible to keep up, there’s so much room, as we like to say, we’re still so early!
Which authors or genres of writing inspired you the most in your career and how have they changed throughout your journey?
Oh so many, too many to mention, I won’t write a whole list out, but anyone that can write from the heart, and help explore the human condition in the most intimate fashion, while being set in the future and a cyberpunk reality, really gets my juices flowing. Cormac McCarthy and William Gibson are two of my biggest influences.
Do you find that the NFT space can be distracting and negatively impact your writing, how do you find the balance between the two?
YES! Massively, my attention span used to be short anyway, now it’s milli seconds! I dread to think what I’m going to be doing when I have to sit back down and work on my novel properly…It is hard finding the balance, the good thing is, a lot of the work / stories I’m writing at the moment are coming in at between 500 and 2,000 words, so that’s a lot easier to tackle with a short attention span and the NFT space constantly knocking at my door, rather than a 90,000 behemoth of a novel.
What piece of advice would you give to somebody in the NFT space who is struggling?
Someone who’s struggling, well, I spend a lot of time online due to the nature of my work, I see people ‘making it’ every single day, people who’ve not had a sale in months all of a sudden get 3 in a row, like anything you have to stick at it and practice. One of the biggest things that’s come out of my timein the space is understanding how important community is, integrate yourself into that, be a nice person, and you’re golden.
What plans do you have in store for the future and are you able to elaborate on any of the projects you have lined up?
Plans for the future and future projects, LOTS, I just launched the ‘Punk Fiction’ series that I hope will get some traction and I have more collabs coming and more of my own things, but you’ll have to keep an eye on my twitter to find out what!
How Richard writes so much, I don’t quite know! What I do know is that he is a story-telling master, and it is no surprise that he has achieved what he has. I am sure that he will continue to succeed with his latest project Punk Fiction, so stay tuned for his future drops! If you liked this article, make sure to subscribe to my page! Let me know who you would like to hear from next and for now- enjoy the rest of your week!