Filmmaker Paul Devlin has been spending time sharing his experiences with his most recent project BLAST!. I mentioned his article on festival strategy and I had a chance to also catch up with his article on ArtistShare, an alternative funding model that he experimented with on the project.

The concept behind ArtistShare actually started with musicians. The site allows fans to put up money in advance of a new album. For a small amount of money, maybe you receive a PDF of sheet music while larger amounts may give you access to performances or executive producer credit. BLAST! was a groundbreaking attempt to use this model for funding a film. Devlin wrote about his experiences for DOX Magazine (PDF).

CEO Brian Camelio describes ArtistShare as a Participant Model. Distinguished from the donor model, which turns the artist into a beggar, or the investment model which turns the artist into a liar (let’s face it, factual ?lms, for instance, rarely turn a pro?t), the Participant Model allows the artist to sell participation in the creative process. This is arguably more digni?ed for the artist

Dozens of musicians have completely funded their projects using this model. The most celebrated example is Maria Schneider, a prominent composer who has won two prestigious Grammy Awards with CDs completely fan-funded through ArtistShare. The ultimate goal of ArtistShare is to develop a community of dedicated fans who will fund the artist from one project to the next. But ArtistShare is a tool, a platform, not a magic formula. It is up to the artist and his or her fans to make it work. Read the entire article [PDF]>>

Thanks to Docs In Progress for the tip.

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