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Photo Animation Leader D-ID Partners with National Geographic Photographer Michael Yamashita to Reverse Carbon Footprint of NFT Sales

D-ID, a global leader in AI video reenactment technology, announced a milestone partnership with  award-winning photographer and author Michael Yamashita in his first NFT drop. With the growing carbon footprint of the NFT industry in mind, proceeds of the sale will be used to offset its own carbon emissions and those produced by all NFTs minted as of Yamashita’s Earth Day announcement. The first “drop” of the world-renowned photographer’s M.Y. Earth Collection will take place on July 20th at 8:30 PM EDT with the second higher ticket auction taking place on August 2nd at 10 PM EDT.

Yamashita and D-ID seek to raise awareness of the environmental damage generated by blockchain and cryptocurrencies. Approximately 630,000 NFTs had been minted as of Earth Day on April 22nd, 2021. With each NFT producing on average 211 kg of CO2, these sales have generated a total carbon footprint of 146,000 tons of CO2, the equivalent of 143 years of air travel. The goal of the M.Y. Earth Collection drop is to raise at least $1.6M, the amount required to offset that negative carbon impact, spurring renewable energy mining by purchasing carbon credits, which cost $10.95 per ton of carbon. Proceeds of the sale will not only cover the damage of this specific sale, but all NFTs minted as of Earth Day.

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Amongst the various works to go on sale, D-ID has used its proprietary Live Portrait technology to animate one of Yamashita’s most iconic images-turned-NFT, Heedless of the Snow. The photograph, which Yamashita shot in 2000 for National Geographic, features a sea of monks dusted in snow, awaiting morning prayers at Labrang Monastery in the traditional Tibetan region of Amdo. D-ID also brought to life one of the younger monks, dubbed The Child in Yellow.

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Tel Aviv-based startup D-ID’s Creative AI technology enables the transformation of pictures and video into high-quality, extraordinary experiences. The company is a leader in using deep learning and image processing technology to animate faces, with successful deployments for customers big and small, around the world. In February D-ID announced a partnership with pioneering genealogy company MyHeritage to launch a new feature for their app called Deep Nostalgia, enabling users to bring photos of their ancestors to life. Deep Nostalgia went viral immediately, turning MyHeritage into the top rated app on the Apple App Store, with users creating nearly 100M animations since its launch.

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Michael Yamashita is a American photographer who has shot for National Geographic for over 40 years, and authored over a dozen books, capturing his passion for photography and travel. With over 1.8 million followers on Instagram, Yamashita is regarded as one of photography’s top influencers. His assignments have taken him to six continents, and he has taught photography classes across the globe. His photographic work, and two documentary feature films, have won numerous industry awards, including from Pictures of the Year, Photo District News, the New York Art Directors Club, and the Asian-American Journalists Association.

“We are thrilled to be partnering with such globally-acclaimed creative talent to illustrate how synthetic media can be used in a positive and responsible way, and to empower Michael Yamashita to breathe new life into his award-winning work,” said Gil Perry, CEO and Co-founder of D-ID. “It is exciting to enter the NFT market as a leader of a crucial effort to reverse the environmental damage this growing trend has created. We intend to continue this important work as we collaborate even more with creators in the media and entertainment industries.”

“I have been very impressed with D-ID’s work, and am very excited to be able to integrate their enterprise-level AI technology in my first foray into the NFT space,” said Yamashita. “D-ID’s sophisticated expertise and experience made the company an obvious choice for this project, in addition to their enthusiasm toward combating the carbon emissions of the NFT space. I look forward to working with this visionary company now and in the future.”

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