The PFP NFT meaning is literally "profile picture NFT". The origin of the name comes from the fact that a pfp nft is a type of digital collectible intended to be used by collectors as their profile picture in different social media platforms - that's especially the case of nft pfp Twitter verified avatars.
Those interested in understanding in detail what is a pfp nft, must take into account the dual nature of the asset - that is, a PFP meaning NFT translates to the item being both a collectible and a digital identity tool. That's why an NFT PFP is also often called a NFT avatar or avatar NFT.
PFPs or NFT avatars currently represent one of the largest NFT categories by market cap and number of owners.
Some of the top PFP NFT projects are CryptoPunks, Bored Ape Yacht Club, Azuki and Clone X.
Animal themed avatars are quite popular, that's why we find several projects featuring ape NFT PFP or monkey NFT PFP aesthetics like Bored Ape Yacht Club. Other NFT monkey PFP popular projects are Cyberkongz, Mutant Ape Yacht Club - a derivative of BAYC - and OnChainMonkey.
As we already mentioned, most of these collectibles - especially blue chip ones, like Bored Ape NFT PFP - are used as digital identity tools. Mostly, they are employed as Twitter NFT PFP items, but we can also find specific Reddit NFT PFP collections.
The boom experienced by this NFT category has led to the emergence of even no-code NFT PFP generator platforms like Bueno (bueno.art).
Pixel art profile picture NFTs are also digital collectibles used mainly by collectors as profile pics in social media platforms like Twitter, Reddit or even Linkedin. What distinguishes them from the rest of PFP types is the fact that they are created using pixel-based low resolution (8-bit or 16-bit) computer graphics.
Pixel art PFPs are so popular that you can even find pixel pfp maker platforms like Picrew and Avatars in Pixels.
CryptoPunks, one of the best PFP NFT projects of all time, features pixel art. It was released by the duo Larva Labs in 2017 and is considered the genesis of the PFP phenomenon. They set the 10k PFP NFT canon and attribute based rarity system that most of the projects of this category follow. If we put the focus on the creation process instead of aesthetics, CryptoPunks can be considered also the first generative PFP collection. Some celebrities with NFT PFP holdings that have chosen CryptoPunks over other collections as their social media pics are Jay-Z, Steve Aoki and Serena Williams.
Besides CryptoPunks, some of the best PFP NFT projects that also feature pixel art are:
Because collector's values and preferences are so diverse, in order to be a great digital identity mechanism, PFP NFTs have to cater for all tastes.
Aesthetic anime PFP projects are usually the most popular choice for those in love with Japanese culture in general, and manga comics in particular. In the market there's a great variety of these projects, with both anime girl pfp and anime boy pfp collections that have achieved a high degree of commercial success.
Many consider Azuki the best NFT PFP anime-themed collection. Among the Anime PFP collections that feature both masculine and feminine characters like in the case of Azuki, we find Clone X, ON1 Force and Renga. Among the girl-only anime PFP collections, some great examples are Lives of Asuna and Killer GF.
Another interesting category is that of gamer pfp projects. Some cool gaming pfp NFTs have experienced a lot of success lately. And the most plausible reason is the fact that these projects, besides featuring an appealing collectible, also offer entertainment in the form of a blockchain video game. Some of those video games allow the users to earn crypto rewards - play-to-earn games -, and in some countries they have become an indispensable extra income for many people. Cool gamer pfp collectibles are definitely one of the most trendy phenomena of 2022.
Some of the most popular gaming PFP nft examples are:
After the great success of their two initial collections, Larva Labs decided to create 3D nft avatars. They called their 3D PFP nfts "Meebits", and airdropped them to holders of punks in May 2021.
After the launch of Meebits, other projects decided to use 3D modeling software for NFT drops. Clone X by Takashi Murakami and RTFKT would be an example of 3D model NFT avatars launched later this year (in November). The market frenzy would lead to even a 3d bears nft collection to be launched in December 2021. And the genre has become so popular that there are even tutorials that explain how to make a 3d nft avatar on your own.
Some examples of cool NFT PFP projects featuring 3D art are: