icon \ ˈī-ˌkän \ [Late Greek eikōn, from Greek] in Eastern Orthodox Christianity : a representation (as in a mural, a mosaic, or a painting on wood) of sacred events or especially of a sacred individual (such as Jesus Christ, the Virgin Mary, or a saint) used as an object of veneration or a tool for instruction.
Welcome to my Universe.
A brief introduction of myself, my name is Dillon ATM, I’m 23 years of age, co-founder and Creative Director of BLVKHVND, a gaming + e-sports co-op and DAO that raised $1 million in 24hrs, and I’ve spent the last half year constructing a universe of my own creation. Here’s what I have so far.
The Seventy Elders Project is a small curated pfp collection, with only 70 possible slots. Obtaining an base Elder NFT is a ticket to having a fully custom pfp designed by me with YOUR face on it (or whoever you decide). There will also be a lore building session where we will decide where your Elder is from, what subsect of the Black Hoods do they represent, and any goals/motivations that they have. We’ll then use the info to transform your Elder into a major player in the narrative of the Gospel of Mark. I will be releasing Elders in cohorts, and personally picking winners to become a part of the universe, or I will be in close contact with the bidders who wish to elect a person who may not have the ability to win the auction. Faces will only be of Black and Indigenous descent, with an emphasis on LGBTQ+ representation. New projects will be revealed that have a spot for everyone!
Each Elder will be written with blank categories in their metadata, and once an auction is won, I will be in contact with the new face of the Elder in order to bring their likeness, backstory, and personalities to life. Once an Elder’s story has been created, the metadata and picture will be updated to shed more light on these mysterious figures. I plan on making these NFTs plug and play into a unique, on-chain, collaborative storytelling experience where you can hop into your characters shoes, run missions, host meetings, uncover artifacts, and permanently change the course of your Elder’s future, as well as the future of Middle America. More details coming soon.
Check out the auction for the First Elder!!
“Gehenna” is a art film/ music video that my team and I produced as a stepping stone into the world of The Gospel of Mark. Starring the faces behind the art, you follow Hakim Escariot as he tracks down a Nephilim across the wastelands of Gehenna. Check it out on Zora if you want an idea of the aesthetics that drive this universe! Currently listed at 20 ETH.
The Gospel of Mark is a three-part journey that follows three main characters across a reimagined United States of America. The laws, characters, and locations of this new America are based in the concepts presented in the Gnostic Gospels; a collection of Christian texts that were omitted/removed from the Bible by the church elite and other clergy due to their non-standard ideas and practices. Unique concepts have also been borrowed from lost or little known Jewish and Islamic ideas and practices.
The story follows a young man, Mark Morningstar as he is put to the ultimate test of leadership and perseverance, The Trial of The Seventy, a coming of age ceremony that will lead Mark to the truth of his heritage, power, the shadowy Sect of the Black Hoods, as well as the true nature of Creation and the nightmare that’s unfolding across Middle America.
Now we get into the good stuff.
(disclaimer: the Gospel of Mark is in alpha. The story is not final and the material written below is subject to change.)
This story begins in the year of our Lord 1777 AD, January 1st. During a surprise attack against the British, George Washington was blessed with a mysterious power, easily destroying his adversaries and leading the American army to a decisive victory in the name of God. At the same time, all around the world, an unseen seal on the rules of reality was shattered, and all manner of myth and legend were unleashed upon the Earth. relics lost to time, monsters only theorized, angels, demons and everything in between littered the globe, and a large chunk of Western America became the new home for these creatures, aptly titled “Gehenna”. Great Britain soon retreated from the warfront to protect its citizens at home, officially withdrawing from the War of Independence and from the American continent as a whole. The colonies immediately banded together to declare their independence and become the United Territories of Middle America in order to form a united front against the growing demonic threat.
The Sect of the Black Hoods was founded the same day, when a slave known only as Duckworth was granted a vision of a glorious land that faced the sea by God, and He told him, “Go and lead thy people to the promised land that I have show thee”. He usurped the plantation from his master and commanded the 70 men and women of the house to go forth and tell the slaves of this land and the way to it. St. Duckworth and the 70 Elders led 10,000 freed people westward through Gehenna. The Middle American armies chased slowly behind, and eventually lost them right before they entered Gehenna, assuming they all died after walking through Hell on Earth, they turned around and headed back home. However, St. Duckworth led the ten thousand completely unscathed through the Valleys of Death arriving in the area that Los Angeles would be. After 72 days of deliberation, on July 1st, 1777 the Holy City of Hinnom was founded.
On January 1st, 1888 AD, St. Louis and his search party returned from an expedition to chart “Hell” in order to better understand how to defend the people of the USMA, but what they uncovered was the Holy Land of Hinnom and the four cities that had been erected by the Sect all along the west coast. The acting pope was furious and declared war on the Hinnomites in order to take possession of the Holy Land. The Natives of the West joined the Hinnomites in the battle, as well as revolutionaries from Mexico and Canada. The acting popes of the Great Euro-American Orthodoxy also declared war on the Hinnomites as a result. All these great powers converged in the Valley of Hinnom to do battle. The Orthodoxy clearly outnumbered the grassroot alliance, but The Hinnomites, now natives to this land, waged guerilla warfare on the advancing forces, pitting the elements and the supernatural against the unsuspecting soldiers. The two powers are still locked in ritual combat over 100 years later, although a pseudo-standstill has been in place since the dropping of the first Metatronic Bomb on December 22nd, 1999 AD. Gehenna is a now even more of a wasteland as a result, nicknamed the Thousand Mile Graveyard by those unfortunate enough to traverse it.
Why a Crowdfund?
When I was building this universe, my initial reasoning was because I thought the subject matter and aesthetic would be cool and really fun to make, but as I delved deeper and deeper into the rabbit hole, I found pieces of myself that I wasn’t aware I was channeling. The further I went, the more I realized I was telling MY story, and the more immersed I got in my own world. A world of my creation.
Realizing the power of my story, and the flexibility that Web3 has afforded me to even be able to dream up a project like this, I decided that I wanted to bring in EVERYONE on this. A collaborative storytelling and lore-building venture that shakes the world to its core. And the best way to make that happen is to bring every mind that wants a part of it under one roof, and pull together funds to execute this vision.
When you reach the goal, what’s next?**
Firstly; I’ll be producing a visual novel/ comic book that follows the main characters daily struggle in the wilds of Gehenna. Token holders will not only get every issue as it releases, but will have a special mentions, cameos, as we’ll as easter eggs and references in the actual material.
Second; I have already assembled an amazing team of cinematographers, musicians, designers, directors, and artists who I know can help me execute my vision. It’s about time we bring film to Web3. I’ll be using funds from this raise to produce short films that lead you through different corners of Middle America, as well as a pilot episode to pitch to Netflix for an exclusive series. (Our gear is already Netflix certified.)
There are other collaborative things I’ll be building. IRL events and easter eggs in locations based on locations in the Gospel, fashion shows, collaborative albums, shows, meetups, the list goes on.
At the absolute upper limit of this crowdfund (333ETH), I’ll start on building a virtual production studio equipped with everything a digital creator would need to create. Mocap suits, real time set building and extension with Unreal Engine, recording booths, all kinds of other cool stuff, and potentially a gallery as well. All this will give not only my team the power to dive deep into creating a universe while keeping the team smaller, but I’ll be opening the studio for use to all $ICON holders, Elders, and holders of my art (minted on the (icon) contract).
I’d like to give a special thank you to everyone that has believed in me, listened to me ramble about random Christian myths for the last few months, supported me in my dreams and encouraged me to push forward. I could’ve never gotten this far alone, and I would’ve never dreamed I could even start on a project like this in my lifetime. Shoutout the crypto community for showing me that anything is possible! Big thank you to all the fam at BLVKHVND, Sirsu, Bria, and my whole Web3 family! See you on the flip side.