Frequently Asked Questions
New to arts entrepreneurship or ArtsStart.org? Here are a few FAQ's to help you get started.
What is entrepreneurship?
There are many definitions of entrepreneurship, from simple to complex. The word entrepreneur is derived from entreprendre, a French word that means "to undertake". In modern times, entrepreneurship is most often associated with business disciplines, though it can be applied in many other settings including, family, social, urban, and arts environments. A quick Google® search will provide you with many of the most popular definitions used in education today. ArtsStart.org defines entrepreneurship as "Opportunity Creation to Fuel Success" and is therefore inclusive of all disciplines, markets, and measures of success.
What do we mean by arts entrepreneurship?
The differences between traditional business entrepreneurship and arts entrepreneurship lie somewhat in the processes used to create the opportunity, as well as in the starting point and intent of an artists as compared to most business entrepreneurs. For example:
- Business entrepreneurs are more willing to answer the demands of the market regardless of where it takes them, whereas musicians and artists fear this may lead to "selling out" or diluting their artistic content. This is especially prevalent in what is commonly referred to as "high art" or "art for arts sake" such as some forms of classical music, jazz, visual arts, or classic dance.
- Artists come to entrepreneurship having invested years of expensive and time consuming training in their craft without determining how it will support them. From the start, business entrepreneurs select and consider opportunities based on potential financial returns.
- Artists are often less focused on financial gain than on artistic merit, audience appreciation, or peer recognition as a measure of their success. Business entrepreneurs are more likely to view financial gain as the primary indicator for success.
- Most artists start as professionals with virtually no education in how to develop themselves commercially. Business entrepreneurs start their careers with the essential training necessary to operate within their market.
What is ArtsStart.org all about?
ArtsStart.org was founded to promote entrepreneurship in the artistic community through an easily understood model called I'mART. Entrepreneurship is certainly not new, but formalized education in the application of entrepreneurship in the arts it has been slow to catch on. Though many professionals in the arts have created wonderful opportunities for themselves, the general populous is quicker to recognize talent and luck as the primary drivers in creating their success. In fact, there are many skills that can be learned that will greatly increase an artist’s chance for success. ArtsStart.org has a mission to educate the artistic community about the power of opportunity creation through arts entrepreneurship. It does so through I'mART and materials that are able to translate traditional business and entrepreneurial skills into concepts that resonate with creative arts professionals.
How do I use ArtsStart.org?
- You can start by downloading the I’mART booklet and other materials from this site. This will give you some background on how the model was created and how it works. Fill out the I'mART pages as best you can, then start to look into the areas that you have questions about. You should also spend some time reading up on the topics in the I'mART model- i.e. do you know what a SWOT Analysis is and how it can help you? The net is an amazing source of information on such topics. Ask lots of questions... ask, ask, ask!
- Next, check out the links page and see what else is out there in the discipline. It also helps to find a mentor or someone who is doing similar things to what you want to do. Make contact if you can and ask questions! Even if you decide to do something that is way out of this world and initially find nobody in your area of interest, there are lots of people who can help you with many of the tasks you don't/can't. Do what you can do well, and find help for the rest. Building a team around you is vital to creating success!
- Start by downloading the I'mART booklet and reviewing the other materials on this site. Select the topics in the I'mART categories you feel will help your students and develop your lesson plans accordingly. If you have additional topics, great! Please help us expand I'mART by contacting us and sharing your success. On the flip side; if you hit a wall and need ideas on the content for lessons, please contact us as well. We have a growing list of users and we may be able to stimulate some new ideas to help meet your student's needs.
Can I duplicate ArtsStart materials?
- All ArtsStart.org materials are protected under copyright law. Generating funds from the use or distribution of ArtsStart.org materials is strictly prohibited without prior arrangement. The I'mART booklet can be printed and used by any sole owner without our consent as long as it is not distributed by that sole owner in any form, for any reason. Distribution is defined as making copies in any form, real or electronic, and distributing it/them to others for any purpose. For more specific terms, please visit our legal page.
- However, our mission is to get our materials into the hands of those who it will benefit, so we allow duplication after the requesting representative (a person, institution, or other entity) contacts us for permission to duplicate materials. When we respond to a request to duplicate, we typically print out a copy of the I'mART booklet without the watermarks and list the host organization on the cover. Removing the author or copyright information from any ArtsStart.org material is strictly prohibited (and is in very bad form!).
- We encourage the use of the I'mART model and are actively trying to raise funds to help provide clinics for institutions that need financial assistance. If we know how many people are using ArtsStart.org materials, it helps us communicate the impact of our work to potential supporters.
How can I help artists and ArtsStart.org?
Let US start by saying thank you for supporting ArtsStart.org and the dream of empowering artists through entrepreneurship. Our goal is to deliver our message and materials to everyone who wants to learn, regardless of their economic level. Your support helps us fill in the gaps and extend our message beyond our means. In addition to funds, we also appreciate in-kind donations, expertise, and just plain ol’ moral support! Please contact us via email to start the process.