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June 29, 2021
Creator Spotlight: Ben Mauro on Versus and Evolution
Creator Spotlight: Ben Mauro on Versus and Evolution

This is a guest post from renowned artist Ben Mauro, creator of Evolution and much more.

Hello everyone, my name is Ben Mauro, and I am the creator of Evolution NFT's as well as the upcoming HUXLEY™ graphic novel series. Next on my list, I’ll be releasing some of my most beloved art on the Versus auction platform, exclusively on Flow. If you haven’t seen my work before, I have been a senior concept designer and art director in the game and film industry, spending over the last 12+ years working on big franchises like Halo, Call of Duty, The Hobbit, Elysium, and many more! 

While my Evolution drop on VIV3 was quite successful with more than 2,500 participants raising over $2M in initial sales (selling out in 7 minutes), the power of NFT's resides in community building and the ability to build richer engagement on top of it. 

Since launch, I have created a series of community challenges and rewards for Evolution collectors. At the moment there are challenges for collecting cards in certain tiers; for each tier, collectors receive a story-driven Mythic class card, which is a full environmental scene featuring one or multiple characters in the project. For the latest Rare challenge, collectors not only received a Mythic card, but also got to participate in the Evolution metaverse egghunt experience, where they explored a planet of one of the alien species in the project in search of a hidden egg. The first person to find the egg was awarded the #1 card, second #2, and so on. 

After the event, all of the rare collectors’ names were immortalized into a stone monument that now lives on the planet for all visitors to see. I am excited to push further into cool experiences like this for my collectors, with some exciting things planned in the coming months. 

As an artist I try to make the work I release on each site very different to one another, so each body of work and experience for collectors is new and fresh. For the Versus drop, I thought it would be interesting to release some of my futuristic military designs. For fans of Call Of Duty, Halo, Metal Gear Solid and other futuristic games and films, I think collectors will enjoy this series of work as it's something I have not released for sale before anywhere else. 

All the art and designs in this drop explore my fascination with realistic future military designs crossed with inspiration from nature and various animal species like gorillas, chimpanzees, crabs, tigers and other members of the animal kingdom. This is always a fun subject for me to work on and design as there are so many possibilities and concepts to create. 

These are also some of my most popular designs I've done over the years. For example the M2 Tiger image was featured in the prestigious Spectrum book series, and the Gorilla Tank has been featured in many books and magazines over the years along with being made into a model kit through Industria Mechanika. While most of my time is spent supporting Evolution and finalizing a few other things, I would definitely love to find a way to fit this series into my metaverse plans.

Versus itself is a very cool concept as a platform, allowing the collectors’ bidding to decide if the final image is a truly-unique one-of-one print, or a limited multi-edition NFT through their custom auction design. I'm excited to see which images end up as 1/1 vs multi-editions, and to make my work available in a brand new way while still engaging within the Flow ecosystem. 

To learn more about the Versus platform, you can check out their full Partner Spotlight right here on the Flow blog.

Adding another layer to this exciting Versus drop, we’re also giving collectors three different chances to get one of these three pieces. The three artworks being auctioned off will be dropped as a series of auctions on separate days. The Gorilla Tank is up for bid on July 6, Crab Tank on July 7, and M2 Tiger Tank on July 8. Each auction will start at 8am ET and will last for only 4 hours.

Please feel free to follow me on any of the social media accounts below to keep in touch and stay up to date on my latest drops. Thanks for checking in on what I’ve been up to since releasing Evolution, I hope to see you all again when my Versus drops start rolling out on July 6!

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