September 27, 2023

Chia Friends: From Network to Collection

User Stories
min read

More nodes than Bitcoin, significantly more energy-efficient, and uses proofs of space and time.

What you just read isn’t a description of Ethereum 2.0, and it’s not a hypothetical blockchain that only exists in science fiction.

It’s the Chia Network, a new blockchain and smart transaction platform that is easier to use, more efficient, and more secure.

But that’s just the surface-level description of the Chia Network. On a higher level, Chia is a third-generation blockchain that leverages underused hard drive space rather than computer power.

For anyone who is a fan of Web3 but still loves Mother Nature, the Chia Network is the beacon of hope you’ve been searching for. If you don’t take our word for it, then maybe The World Bank can because they selected Chia Network as the backbone of its Climate Warehouse.

The Chia Network is a different type of blockchain.

If you’re sitting there thinking, “Wow, that’s pretty neat 😀. But what does this have to do with NFTs or generating art?”

Just hold your horses for a second; we’ll get there. But first, there’s some quality backstory to these creators and how they built a portfolio of impressive Web3 projects.

A blockchain that’s all about security

So why would an NFT degen care at all about another blockchain?

Put bluntly, plenty of reasons, but we sat down with Seth Jenks, Head of Design for Chia Network, to get the scoop from someone on the inside:

Chia has several advantages over existing ecosystems. The smart contract architecture is much more secure and auditable than existing solutions. For example, in Ethereum, if an NFT smart contract were to be compromised, all of the NFTs it governs could be bricked or stolen.

In a space that’s still rife with scams, a blockchain that doubles down on security is immediately impactful. To hammer the point home, here’s what he had to say, “With Chia, each NFT has its own smart contract that governs it built-in. This allows for real digital ownership. Collectibles can be traded peer-to-peer independently of any marketplace, and royalties are enforced on-chain and paid out to the artist.”

Having your crypto wallet drained is scary for anyone in the space, but he lived through this nightmare scenario and lost hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of NFTs.

Chia is a solution to this theft and a massive relief to creators who move their projects to the Chia chain.

But the Chia Network doesn’t just stop at a revolutionary alternative blockchain. They decided to expand within the world of Web3, which involved entering the digital collectibles space.

Discovering NFTs

While having been in the design world for years, it wasn’t until March 2021 that he learned about crypto art and NFTs. What tipped him over into Web3 and non-fungible tokens was the Art Blocks community.

He collected a few pieces and was fascinated with the technology behind the art. He isn’t just an average NFT enthusiast; but a creator and builder that is part of a revolutionary Web3 project.

It would only make sense for the Chia Network to develop their NFT collection: Chia Friends.

Chia Friends for the Chia Network

With an entirely new blockchain, the leadership behind Chia Network knew that an NFT project to go with this new technology made sense. Put simply; Chia Friends is a collection of 10,000 tokens made up of loyal robots, plants, and animals.

Chia Friends, a PFP NFT collection of pixelated plants, animals and machines

Going further, “Chia is an interesting blend of technology with an ecological focus. I wanted to create characters that spoke to the unique aspects of the technology and community.”

Of course, with a sophisticated blockchain comes a sophisticated NFT collection that goes far beyond an array of pixelated characters.

Pixelated or puzzled?

What makes this project a sophisticated collection of tokens?

For one, there’s a secret puzzle built into the Chia Friends collection, and cracking it reveals a hidden message. Here’s how he described it:

Communal storytelling is an exciting aspect of NFTs for me as an artist. Puzzles are a big part of the Chia ecosystem and cryptography in general, So I wanted to create something that incorporated both. I see the Chia Friends project as a toolset for storytelling through puzzles and art. There are the seeds of story and community engagement hidden throughout the collection. Having a neat set of PFPs is one thing, but offering the thread of discovery through hidden messages and engaging with a community is an added layer that can be exciting and fun.

Many of the tokens have easter eggs hidden within the image, and each clue has its own cryptographic significance. When it came to Chia Friends, Seth and his team think long-term and want to provide their community with value, utility, and storytelling for years to come.

A GIF of different Chia Friends NFTs

Plus, while many NFT projects and their teams are in it for the financial aspect, Chia Friends is all about giving back to an exceptional cause.

It’s not a bear; it’s a marmot!

While some of us (cough cough ME) mistook those cute pixelated mammals for bears, they’re actually marmots, and there’s a meaning to this. The marmot is the unofficial mascot of the Chia community, and 100% of the collection’s proceeds go to the Marmot Recovery Foundation.

Marmot Recovery Foundation Logo

Yet even with an adorable mascot that promotes a good cause and a unique collection that features hidden puzzles, putting this all together required a crucial set of tools.

“Bueno saved my life.”

That’s a direct quote from a seasoned professional in the design world and a creative force within Web3.

Still, even if you have high-level technical skills, creating a collection can be challenging. For Seth, making the assets was no problem at all, but the issue that needed resolving was how he would mix the design assets.

It wasn’t until Bueno launched that he found the miracle solution he was looking for.


As I got into the thick of it, it was clear that Bueno was a thoughtfully crafted solution and not just an MVP. It’s really a small miracle for me that this tool came along when it did.

Again, this is high praise from a creator with more than enough tech savviness. Bueno was that missing tool that Seth needed to complete his project and bring Chia Friends to life.

Chia Friends being made with the Bueno Generator.

What’s even more delightful about how this came together is that Bueno made the process easy. Since Seth already had the creative pieces, Bueno made mixing the assets seamless and stress-free.

What this means for other creators

Whether you’re a professional-level designer or just trying to break into the NFT space, there’s a way that Bueno is here to facilitate the creative experience.

Chia Friends, a well-thought-out and complex collection, used the Bueno Generator to mix the assets and form the actual combinations that would end up being the final tokens.

But for other creators, the missing tool could be the Smart Contract Deployer, or if you’re into building worlds for your community, maybe you need the Microverse!

The point is that project complexity or your dev skill levels don’t have to be roadblocks for your NFT collection.

In other words, Bueno is like that first cup of coffee in the morning: it’s here to say “GM!” and help you get things going.

Discover more projects made with Bueno. Read more.

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