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Lana Denina

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Meet Lana Denina, The 24-Year-Old Who Made Six Figures While Prioritizing Representation Through Her Artwork

When you discover your passion as an adolescent, it often becomes something that never leaves you, regardless of where life takes you. From painting and making digital art to now recently creating non-fungible tokens (NFTs), Lana Denina has yet to shake off her adoration for art. Since she took her craft to a professional level at age 19, she has continued to find ways to bring Black representation into the space. Inspired by tribes around the globe and their features, Denina is all about showcasing their beauty in a field where for ages its mainstream art has been centered on European standards. “When I was young, I was telling myself that I wanted to be an artist. And I wasn’t seeing like a lot of Black artists in museums and art galleries,” Denina told AfroTech. “Growing up when I was exposed to a lot of art, I was living in France and it was really mainly white male French painters. I didn’t feel like it was representative enough of what art can be. So, that’s why I want to...

Ngozi Nwanji

Mar 29, 2022

Meet Elise Swopes, The Artist Who's Made Over $200K Selling NFTs In Just About 10 Months

Elise Swopes does both Brooklyn and Chicago proud. As an artist, she enjoys landscape work — usually featuring big city skylines like New York City or Atlanta. Then, according to her website, she “uses water and light as a paintbrush; snow turns into speckles, street lamps become glowing orbs, and water droplets take on abstract forms as she edits on the go using an array of mobile apps.” Today, the 32-year-old New York-based mixed-medium artist has turned her love of (non-fungible tokens) NFTs into a side hustle of epic proportions — and it’s made her more than $200,000 richer. Elise Swopes told CNBC that after her first NFT sold for more than $17,000 in March 2021, she knew her life was going to change. “And it has ever since then. It’s definitely brought me a lot of opportunities,” she said. The good thing about Swopes’ NFT sales is that she doesn’t just make money from the actual NFT sale itself. Rather, each time one of her NFTs gets resold, she makes a royalty between 10 and...