Support from Friends and Family

As Dorothy so aptly noted in the Wizard of OZ, “there’s no place like home.” The same is true when considering how to begin your search for finding investors interested in supporting your artwork. Family and friends are a great place to start as you think about what strategies you may use to pitch your ideas or concepts and create new leads for funding. The same people who have supported your growth as an artist may in fact be your first financial backers. Gaining this support will help you make the case to outside funders that you have a core group of individuals interested and willing to invest in your work. Start with those you trust and are most comfortable approaching. Test persuasive ways to invite family and close friends to become investors. Ask them for feedback on your approach. Solicit their opinions on your most compelling arguments for investment. This strategy will also be helpful as you refine your “ask” and move on to seek funding from other private and public lenders or foundations. The way you design your pitch is up to you and should take into account the comfort level of all involved. Other than that, be creative, have fun and set a realistic goal.

Remember as well, that while not everyone will be able or willing to donate cash to your project, there may be other ways for them to contribute. Discuss bartering or “in-kind” donations of goods or services. In-kind donations could include volunteering time at an event, use of space, reviewing documents or any other host of services that could be useful in your work.

As this type of request can be sensitive for some, there are tools that you can take advantage of that can give you a more organized approach such as crowdfunding sites like Kickstarter or IndieGoGo.