5 Quick Tips: Negotiating for Artists

Don’t buy into the myth that getting to make your work is payment enough. Artists have the right to fair compensation for their time. Determine how much you realistically should be paid to successfully execute your idea and negotiate the terms that make it possible. On July 6, Creative Capital will launch Effective Negotiation for Artists, a brand new webinar to help you get to “yes.”

No one is a better advocate for you than yourself. If you don’t ask for what you deserve, no one is going to hand it to you. Creative Capital consultant and PDP leader, Andrew Simonet put together 5 quick tips to help you prepare the negotiation process for your next project.

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15 Stories for 15 Years

I am thrilled to share Creative Capital’s 15th Anniversary Publication, celebrating our long-term dedication to supporting artists in all disciplines across the country. We asked 15 people from our community—grantees, board members, supporters, consultants and other friends—to share their Creative Capital stories with us. I hope you will enjoy hearing what Creative Capital has meant to them.

Click the icon in the bottom right corner of the black bar to view full-screen, or download the publication here.

In creating this publication, it became clear very quickly just how many people have contributed to Creative Capital’s success over the years. Our community is really what makes Creative Capital unique and we couldn’t do it without you! We will be expanding on this publication with a series of other CC stories in the coming months. Click here to share your story, and you could be featured on our blog!

Photo Gallery: What Exactly Does a Producer Do?

Independent Producer Meredith Boggia will sit down for a discussion with MAP Fund Program Director Moira Brennan on themes and trends affecting artists working in the performing arts as a part of our Conversations Inside series. Register for the webinar to take part in their conversation on July 9, 7:30-9:00pm ET

Meredith Boggia & Friends

Meredith Boggia and Friends in Alaska for a production of Catalyst Dance’s Shore

So, what exactly does a producer do? The short answer: they make things happen.
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Taylor Ho Bynum Turns a 2000 Mile Bike Ride Into a Performance

In 2014, Taylor Ho Bynum, a world-class cornetist and composer, set out from Vancouver, Canada with his bike and musical instrument. As he made his way down the west coast, he stopped in various towns presenting solo concerts and playing with ensembles of area musicians. The Acoustic Bicycle Tour, Taylor’s Creative Capital supported project, saw the musician turning a bicycle tour from Canada to Mexico into an “act of composition.”

Read more about Taylor Ho Bynum and Acoustic Bicycle Tour here.

A Page from Our Handbook: Marketing Tips and Strategies

Documentation of On the Impossibility of Freedom in a Country Founded on Genocide and Slavery, a performance by Dread Scott, 2014. Photographed by Mark Von Holden

Documentation of “On the Impossibility of Freedom in a Country Founded on Genocide and Slavery,” a performance by Dread Scott, 2014. Photographed by Mark Von Holden

These tips come straight from our Professional Development Program’s Artist’s Tools Handbook—a 200+ page resource we give to Core Workshop attendees, written by PDP Core Leaders Jackie Battenfield and Aaron Landsman. The book covers everything from writing to budgeting, websites to fundraising, elevator pitches to work samples. Similarly, each post will be packed with practical ideas to make your life run more smoothly, leaving you even more time for your creative practice. Learn more about our PDP workshops and webinars here.

Marketing is the process of communicating about you and your work and the methods you use as a means to foster interest from others. Remember that no one cares as much you do about your art. Communicating about your work is ultimately your responsibility and is crucial to building your career. You should develop a marketing strategy and commit to doing something to promote your work each day.

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Social Media Tips: It’s About Quality, Not Quantity


Social Media--How to be Everywhere All the Time

Creatives have heard time and time again about the growing importance of promoting our work via social media. You might have thousands of friends and post on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest, and Instagram every day but you’re not quite getting the engagement you expected. What’s the deal? If you’re having trouble getting a return from your time spent on social media, reflect and reconsider how you engage with your networks on a regular basis. Our upcoming webinar Social Media: How to be Everywhere All the Time (Monday, June 22, 7:00pm EST) offers an in-depth view of best practices on social media for artists. Learn how to use social media to communicate about your work, expand your networks, and create a deeper connection with your audience. Here are some basic tips to get you started:

Figure out what is valuable for you and curate your daily feed. Facebook and Twitter both offer great sorting capabilities with the ability to prioritize groups, form lists, and ignore unwanted content. Use those lists to discern who gets to see your vacation photos and your clients or collectors that might not need to know you that well. Don’t be afraid to say no to friend requests and unfriend people with whom you have little affinity. If you’re concerned about offending someone you can always mute or unfollow their posts. Continue reading

Quintan Ana Wikswo Queers Storylines & Images


For a society recently focused on how rigidly we should adhere to the identities that are supposed to define us, Quintan Ana Wikswo’s new book of photography and stories comes as a spiritual guide. The Hope of Floating Has Carried Us This Far is a book of stories that bend genres but also subject matter: while their plots are able to be teased out, they are written so loosely that any reader would be able to bring his or her own interpretation to them. Likewise for the photography: single images are shot across continents and time frames. To celebrate the launch of the book, Quintan has lined up a series of performances, exhibitions and Q&As across the country.

On the eve of her journey, we caught up with her to find out why she was so interested in weaving together all these story forms and artistic practices.

Alex Teplitzky: I’m interested in the stories in this book and how they relate to the photographs. Can you tell me about them?

Quintan Ana Wikswo: My other bodies of work surround uncovering time-space sites where atrocities have been intentionally erased by perpetrators of bigotry. This book – and its photographs – focus on the intimate lives of trauma survivors as they/we navigate the differences between healing and transformation. Although it is fiction, it is autobiographical, and is a tribute to how brains process memories of the past, perceptions of the present, and visions of the future through an alchemical catalysis of the verbal and the visual.

I write the stories and photographs simultaneously – I have a traumatic brain injury and often the visual cortex alternates with the language center in its functioning. So I haul my salvaged military cameras and typewriters to these sites, and shuttle back and forth between writing and making images as my brain function shifts its capacities.

The stories and photographs are investigations of how humans and ecologies can respond to exploitative trauma by fighting to transform, rather than attempting to repair an eviscerated past. Culturally, we have a punitive rubric around “healing” – similar to how we speak of “winning or losing the battle against cancer.” These are flawed dichotomies and conceptual architectures. I question whether healing is actually the ultimate goal after trauma, and suspect it’s more fruitful to instead take agency over radical transformation – of ourselves, as well as society and its systems.

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A Room of One’s Own: Upcoming Residency Opportunities for Writers

Woman Writing

Image by Erin Kohlenberg

Do you ever wonder, “How am I possibly going to find the time to sit down and write my next book around my day job, taking care of my family, eating, sleeping…?” Uninterrupted time in a room of one’s own is precious and increasingly hard to come by for professional artists and writers. If you’re struggling to figure out how to carve out time for your work, you should consider applying for a residency or grant. These opportunities often prove to be defining moments in an artist’s career, allowing writers the peace of mind or financial support to focus on developing their projects.

On Monday, June 8, Graywolf Press Editorial Director Ethan Nosowsky will host his webinar, Applying for Grants & Residencies for Writers, to help writers understand what selection committees and grantors look for in competitive applications.

“I’ve been editing books for almost twenty years, and I can’t count the number of writers I’ve worked with who simply would not have gotten published without a well-timed grant or a much-needed residency at an artist’s colony.”
-Ethan Nosowsky

Below is a list of upcoming deadlines for grants, residencies and fellowship programs for writers. Register for Ethan’s webinar on Monday, June 8 to learn more about locating opportunities and choosing the right program for you. Please post any other upcoming deadlines or resources that your peers should know about in the comments section! Continue reading

Katrin Sigurdardottir On Drawing and Sculpting Space

Katrín Sigurðardóttir, "Supra Terram," 2015. Installation view at Parasol unit foundation for contemporary art. Photo: Jack Hems; Courtesy of Parasol unit.

Katrín Sigurðardóttir, “Supra Terram,” 2015. Installation view at Parasol unit foundation for contemporary art. Photo: Jack Hems; Courtesy of Parasol unit.

Katrín Sigurðardóttir (2015 Visual Arts) is premiering her Creative Capital-supported project with “Supra Terram,” a site-specific installation at Parasol unit in London. Supra Terram (from the Latin term for ‘going above ground’) is a large grotto-like sculpture that extends through the ceiling of Parasol unit’s ground-floor gallery into the gallery space above. I connected with Katrín to learn more about this project and her ongoing exploration of duality and shifting perspective in sculptural installations.

Jenny Gill: Much of your work is site-specific and architectural in nature. Can you talk about the interplay between sculpture and architecture in your work?

Katrín Sigurðardóttir: I am primarily interested in the notion of place, and place is manifested in natural or man-made topography. I use architectural techniques and technologies to describe places; I am less interested in architecture as a means to solve problems, spatial or functional. And even if I am of course concerned with how materials build up, I see this as a basic concern in sculpture. I don’t know if I approach materials or structure in the same way an architect would. Continue reading

No Artist is an Island: Creative Capital Workshops Go to Hawaii

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Whether it’s a web-based class or a workshop in our New York office, our Professional Development Program is super accessible to artists all over. From Jackson Hole, Wyoming, to Jacksonville, Florida, we have presented workshops for diverse communities across the United States. Recently, we were invited to Honolulu, Hawaii by Interisland Terminal. Amy Smith, PDP’s Financial Literacy workshop leader, led artists there through a day that included tips and strategies for savings, taxes, getting out of debt, budgeting and expense tracking.

My experience started on Friday night when I met my three hosts: Wei Fang, Maile Meyer and Trisha Lagaso Goldberg. They presented me with beautiful scented leis and took me out to a lovely dinner of local food. I felt like a princess! These three women created Interisland Terminal as a labor of love because they care so much about the local arts community. I can relate to that, having myself started a local service organization for dance with a local committee, and served on many boards. But it’s always so great to be around people who are actively working to improve the situation in their home communities, as these women are. It’s inspiring. Continue reading