Crowd funding the Arts

Crowd funding is still a hot topic when it comes to funding arts projects but is it all that it’s cracked-up to be?

Its popularity lies in the fact that it’s a very democratic way to resource the arts, taking the decision-making out of the hands of the gatekeepers and placing it in the hands of the mob, so to speak. Or you can think of it as part of the sharing economy – I share my work, you share your cash.

But unlike death and taxes, there are no guarantees. Planning is key and depending on the platform you choose, there’s a chance you may not receive any money at all.

According to Stephanie Ney no matter what your source, there is no quick fix for raising funds for your arts project or organisation.

Ms Ney will be speaking at the upcoming Business of Being Creative forum in Kempsey on 24 May.

“Funding is always a popular subject and I will be sharing my twenty-five years of experience in fundraising for organisations such as Bell Shakespeare, the Museum of Contemporary Arts and my most recent project, saving the iconic Sawtell Cinema,” Ms Ney said.

“Crowd funding is a great way to activate the community and give them ownership of a project, but it’s a lot of hard work and not something in my experience that you can really outsource.”

The Save Sawtell Cinema campaign has been one of the most successful community crowd funding campaigns in the country, smashing its initial target of $75,000 to raise over $140,000 towards new seating for the refurbished Sawtell Cinema.

“The campaign itself ran for just over two months and yet it was six months in the planning. An enormous amount of work went in to get the fabulous result in the end,” Ms Ney said.

Ms Ney will be sharing some of the secrets behind the Save Sawtell Cinema campaign plus will touch on other innovative funding models.

“When we think of arts funding we invariably think government grants – and yet, this too is hard work – there are no free rides when it comes to funding,” she said.

People who run a creative business or are thinking of starting one on the Mid North Coast are encouraged to attend the Creative Industries Forum.

The Business of Being Creative forum is designed to help people turn their creative endeavours into a profitable business.

This event will run on Tuesday 24 May at the Slim Dustry Centre in Kempsey from 9am to 6pm. Early bird tickets only cost $69!

To find out more information visit: www.etcltd.com.au/creativeindustriesforum or contact Marilyn Breen, ETC Business Advisor, Kempsey on 0417 201 794 or Kevin Riddell, Business Programs Manager in Coffs Harbour on 0408 128 496.

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