How to Fund Creativity online

By Megan Goodacre

How to Fund Creativity online

Don't you love it when someone uses the power of the internet for good instead of evil? Have you looked at Kickstarter yet? (This is probably old news to a lot of people, but my excuse is that I was busy knitting. I should just tattoo that somewhere. It works for everything: Why isn't dinner ready? Didn't you hear what I was saying? Where are all the towels?)

Musicians, artists, writers, actors, dancers, programmers, designers, etc., if you are one, or know one, or have inadvertently married one, you'll know that creative professions are both wonderful and brutal. You get to do something you love, yes. If you're lucky, you find a like-minded audience who supports you with positive feedback. Creative success is a powerful, affirmative rush. But, here's the other side: you often work for nothing or next-to. And inadequate funding can really get in the way of productivity.

Kickstarter is a site where creative people can post creative projects that need specific funding. The projects must fall under the category of: Art, Comics, Dance, Design, Fashion, Film, Food, Games, Music, Photography, Publishing, Technology, and Theater. Millions of people visit the site each month.

When you find a project that you like, you can pledge a dollar amount. The incentive? Not just the warm feeling you get from helping someone. Each pledge has a token of appreciation gift that goes along with it.

For example, pledge $5 to a yarn company, receive a free pattern. Pledge $20 to that yarn company, and you get to name a colourway! Pledge $20 to a musician, receive an EP. Pledge $100 to a new art magazine, receive a subscription. You get the idea..

So, put your knitting down for a minute, pause Angry Birds for a second (don't worry, you won't lose your progress), and find yourself something to pledge on Kickstarter. For the price of a cappuccino, you can help someone's project.

Here's the inspiring Kickstarter success story that I saw this morning:

6dot Braille labeller: A group of MIT graduate students raises over $50,000 to fund their design of a portable Braille labeller

Another example of a successful Kickstarter project (this one is knitting related, this is supposed to be a knitting blog after all).

Wool Dispensary goes to YarnCon: Limited edition yarn hand-dyers raise $3,300 to go to YarnCon.

A few knitting related projects looking for pledges

9/11 Knit: A mixed media textile project, spinning newspapers from September 12-17 2011 into yarn

Farmer's Market Dye & Design: help them make a knitting series Blog, free patterns, food-dyed yarns

Knitting Untangled - a How to Knit Book: knitter and writer Sean Riley is self-publishing a knitting book