RocketHub at General Assembly NYC - Thursday August 11th

RocketHub is stoked to teach a crowdfunding workshop at the white-hot General Assembly, an urban campus for entrepreneurs seeking to transform industry and culture through technology and design. GA (as it’s known to the Silicon Alley scene) provides programming, space, and support services to foster collaborative practices and learning opportunities. “We wanted to recreate the feeling of a college campus, ” say Adam Pritzker, one of the principles behind GA. “Something that was outside the structure of an institution but had the same academic tendencies.” On Thursday August 11th at 6PM - RocketHub is presenting a lecture called Crowdfunding Your Product - and there are a limited number spots still available for the session.  We look forward to seeing you there! Email us for a promo code - and RocketHub will hook you up with a discount. Brian Meece Photo images courtesy Dan Frommer, Business Insider

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  • August 10, 2011

Artsicle Photography Show - The Recap of a Gala

Friday night RocketHub hosted the Artiscle Photography Show in the Chelesa neighborhood of New York City. The gala was made up of a wonderfully mixed crowd of artists, press, and photography enthusiasts - over 100 people dropped by throughout the eve - and the vibe was warm, fun, and friendly. Joshua Reuben Lewis rocked an acoustic set of his new NONVIOLENCE record, and selected photographers Laura Boyd and Jo Arellanes shook hands with fans of their work. The World Monuments Fund Gallery was so pleased with the work that they’ve extended the show an extra week - we think that pretty much says it all! A heartfelt thanks to all of those who came out and made this show a success.

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  • August 8, 2011

Christmas in August - Sean & Aimee Crowdfund a New Album

Sean and Aimee Dayton are award winning musical artists from North Bay, Ontario. They’ve released three albums and are now working to develop their new Christmas record. I spoke with Sean about what inspires this dynamic duo and about the timing of their new endeavor. What was the inspiration behind the music project you are currently running on RocketHub?  Why is it important to you and why do a Christmas album now? It seems the older I get, the busier Christmas becomes. I hear it from friends and family all the time. Running around buying presents. Working extra hours to pay for the presents. Then trying to find time to wrap all the presents. It can be a pretty hectic time. Our Christmas album is kind of a response to that. To give people a chance to slow down in the midst of the craziness. It’s sort of an acoustic Christmas album. A lot of us have great memories hanging out with family in the living room … that’s how we’re trying to approach this album. A ‘Living Room Christmas’. Our faith plays a big a part in the songs we’ve selected. That’s what Christmas is about for us.  That makes sense a lot of sense. How has your experience been as a crowdfunding pioneer in the world of music in Canada - how are your supporters responding? The response has been amazing so far! We’re definitely on track to reaching our $5000 goal. The window for selling Christmas music (traditionally) is pretty small .. so the great thing about this is that it’s helped open the window for us. Not only that, .. I’m seeing that people are buying extra copies. That probably wouldn’t have happened any other way. We’re only 15 days into the campaign, but I’m already convinced that crowdfunding is the way to go.  Very smart use of the crowdfunding mechanism. You’ve built a lot of momentum quickly. Any advice for Creatives looking to crowdfund a similar project? Build relationships. Most of my supporters so far have been people that I know personally. Facebook & twitter are great to help get the word out, but you might not get a huge response unless you have relationships with some of these people. They’ll be more apt to support your project .. especially when they know you (and they’re interested in what you’re doing). Also, a good deal/incentive never hurts - especially when it involves Christmas cookies!! Thanks Sean and Aimee for your heartfelt project. Check it out, here. -Vlad

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  • August 5, 2011

Whiskey Planet - A Virtual World is Crowdfunded

"Whiskey Planet is a brutally realistic, gritty and heavily-stylized post-apocolyptic survival sim game." They had be at the first line. Being a big gaming fan, I was intrigued. So I needed to talk to Christopher Postill about his crowdfunding endeavor. Chris seems to be the modern-day Renaissnace Man with a few major creative interests. What was the inspiration behind the gaming project you are currently running on RocketHub?  Why is it important to you? The project has been a loooong time in the making. It was originally conceived as a collaborative graphic novel; a story inspired by Tom Waits’ music, The Day The Earth Stood Still, The Road, Mad Max and whiskey of course… all this dirty, gritty, unapologetic rough-around-the-edges stuff. I loved the post-apocalyptic stories that were more about people reacting to the loss of modern day society rather than people getting eaten by zombies. However, the comic didn’t happen for a number of reasons (there were 5 separate authors to say the least).  I still loved the idea but it got moved to the backburner for a while. When Josh (the lead programmer) and I (game design) worked together at a game development company a few years ago, I showed him some of the material I had developed. He thought it could be a cool online game, but again, our schedules were much too hectic at the time. We both went our separate ways for a while, but kept emailing each other saying “Hey man, we really should make that game some day!”. When I found RocketHub, it seemed like a really good way to make it happen, and here we are. The game is like a mix between playing RISK with 50 people, having an alter-ego to keep alive (in real time) in a ‘post-collapse-of-society’ world, and a really cool gritty comic book narrative to create/explore with your friends. We’ve got 5 factions that all play differently; sort of like Magic: The Gathering if the goal of the game wasn’t only to destroy your opponents, but also to keep yourself alive in a harsh world. Honestly, it is almost half a game and half a social experiment… to see how players will handle the world we build for them. I’m curious about how much co-operation will happen. That’s why we’re so passionate about it, there is a lot of “Why hasn’t anyone built this yet!?”, “Can our game get away with being that harsh?” and “Imagine that in real life?! That’d be insane!” as we test. I’m a big Tom Waits and Risk fan - so I see where you’re coming from, in an awesomely weird way. How has your experience been as a crowdfunding pioneer in the world of indie-gaming and self-publishing - how are your supporters responding? I love crowdfunding. It is really hard, but when people get behind your game they seem legitimately invested in it and that’s brilliant. Indie game development seems to be a pretty established industry now, but there are still a lot of questions about how to do it right. With Whiskey Planet, we’ve kept pretty quiet about development. We just slowly sent off the funding campaign to people we thought would be legitimately interested in it. Word seems to have made its way around and now we’ve been seeing a lot of feedback from both supporters and haters alike. There are a number of forums discussing how the game will play, what is and isn’t cool about it, etc. We’ve been doing our best to stay on top of these conversations and take everyone’s thoughts into mind. Moral of the story is, with crowd-funding you need to make something interesting, you need to be honest/transparent about how you make it, and you need to count on the crowd to help you make a good game with not only money, but supportive feedback and damn harsh criticism too. We see crowdfunding as a major new path for indie game developers. Any advice for Creatives looking to crowdfund a similar project? Too much to fit into a few paragraphs… First and foremost, be innovative, especially with gaming projects. There are massive studios with massive budgets out there and the best way to stand out is to try some new things with your game. For us its the permanent death, the mix of real-time survival and social strategy, and the cool AI that creates a fixed economy of wildlife/food supplies. We approached the game as though we were challenging players to fight not only against each other, but against the game itself to stay alive. Instead of treating it as a problem, we embraced the idea that certain ‘towns’ in our game might become almost uninhabitable for a period of time if players get too greedy and destroy all the wildlife there. We think that is cool! Not everyone will I’m sure, but those who like a game that challenges what they are used to playing, will almost certainly dig it. So, in short, take the standard procedures from whatever genre game you are making and flip them on their heads, if anything you’ll make something interesting.  Games are particularly fun because you can offer really cool incentives. We’re designing landmarks in the game that are named after our funders. Those who really back the project get a whole town named after them. These are huge parts of the narratives that will come out of the game and its fun to honor the people who support us like that. When “Dakota’s Tavern” (named after one of our current funders) is the last stand of The Horde Punks in such and such a town, we hope he can get a good smirk out of seeing that happen. The last thing I’ll say is promote like a human. I learned really quickly that blasting out copy and pasted emails isn’t the way to go about promoting online. Especially with crowdfunding, you are looking for people to become part of your project, to take a genuine interest in your game and support it. Find bloggers, actually read their blog, then write them an email like you were meeting them at the pub. If they feature your project, they will write a much better article about the game as well as YOU yourself; and their readers will be all the more into it. I could ramble on, if you actually want to chat about your project, or Whiskey Planet, etc. shoot me an email at! Great advice and honesty. Reach out to Chris if you have any questions or visit his project page to jump in. -Vlad

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  • August 3, 2011

Illustrating the Journey - Crowdfunding and Self-Publishing

We live in a beautiful world. Alexandria Neonakis offers a very unique and gorgeous perspective on both common and uncommon sights. “Places” is a personal art project that Alexandria started upon taking a giant cross-continental road trip with her sister last summer. Alexandria is now leveraging the power of her friends and fans to self-publish this wonderful collection of illustrations. I spoke with Alexandria about her journey and about the process of DIY publishing. What was the inspiration behind the visual art project you are currently running on RocketHub?  Why is it important to you? The idea for Places came to me while on a cross-continental road trip with my little sister last summer. We drove from our hometown in Halifax, Nova Scotia to Los Angeles, California. North America is a beautiful continent, and each individual stop was absolutely flooded with incredible people and scenery. I used a flip camera to record pieces of the drive and little moments. When I got home and re-watched all of the videos, I decided to do a series of illustrations. I wanted to try to capture not only the places, but the feelings and memories I had there. It really just snowballed from there. I spend a lot of time traveling. I realized while working on the project that each place I’ve been has had a distinct impact on my life. A project of this size however takes a ton of time. To be able to complete a project like this would be a huge accomplishment to me as an artist. It’s a big goal, but I’m a pretty determined person… I drove 6000kms in 14 days in a Honda Civic even though people told me that I was nuts for even trying. I feel like I can do pretty much anything haha. Your work is great and your journey comes through in the images. How has your experience been as a crowdfunding pioneer in the world of art, particularly an innovative and new form of visual art - how are your supporters responding? Crowdfunding was something I didn’t fully understand at first. I stumbled onto RocketHub a couple weeks ago and started looking around. At first I thought my project was too small and wouldn’t get enough interest. Everyone else had things like songs and music videos and TV shows to pitch and all sorts of really interesting stuff. I am interested in my project, but would anyone else be? Also… it’s digital art. there will be a tangible book at the end, but do people want digital doodles? I pretty quickly learned that people love them, and that my network are just as excited about this as I am! I think a part of the reason the doodles were so widely appreciated is because I post them on the person’s Facebook wall with a little thank you message. It gets shared on their network, some set it as their profile pic… it gets shown off in a way that a real sketch on paper mailed to their doorstep probably wouldn’t. Each contribution from the $5 donation to the $500 donation gives me a little lump in my throat. It’s one thing to be passionate about something, it’s another entirely to have other people excited enough about you and your projects to give you what they can. That’s a brilliant use of Facebook and digital content. You’ve built a lot of momentum quickly. Any advice for Creatives looking to crowdfund a similar project? To people who want to do this, just do it! Post it to your Facebook, your Twitter, your Deviantart, your blog… hit as many people in your network as you can! Don’t be naggy or beggy or anything like that, I just said “Hey guys, you know those drawings of places I’ve been making the past couple of months? I want to make those into a book, and I’m looking for contributions! Check out my RocketHub project” and it just went on its own from there. Having a good network of peers helps. All of the people who funded me so far are friends, fellow artists and fans of my work from Deviantart. If you’re an artist, whether you want to make a RocketHub project today or maybe in a few months, get to building your network! It’s not just about finding clients, it’s about connecting with your peers. I am always willing to help out with a cool arts project, and Places is proof that lots of people, both artists and fans of art, feel the same! I also try not to over flood my Facebook or Twitter with posts asking more people to contribute. Instead, I post the reward doodles I’ve been doing as I finish them, and that has built a ton of momentum. People see the rewards being given almost immediately, and that makes them more willing to contribute. I want to generate excitement and support, I don’t want Facebook and Twitter friends to stop following my posts because I’m begging too much haha. Lastly, don’t feel like your project is not worth it. It’s a lesson I learned from my RocketHub experience :) Perfect advice! Thank you Alexandria for your beautiful work and poignant insights. Reserve your copy of the book. -Vlad

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  • August 1, 2011

A Journey Into the Unconscious Mind through this Film Crowdfunding Project

Gleb Osatinksi is the writer, director and producer of a short film called “Pisces of an Unconscious Mind,” a psychological drama about a journey between worlds of consciousness. The film is based loosely on his experiences, and is told through the languages of scenic imagery, poetry, and allegory. It is an artistic and sincere take on an introspective topic. Gleb is in the process of running a successful crowdfunding capaign on RocketHub and I had the pleasure of catching up with him about his endeavor and his mind…   What was the inspiration behind the film project you are currently running on RocketHub?  Why is it important to you? To say simply - this project is my life changer. I hadn’t directed a film before, though I always wanted to. I admire good directors, like Bergman, Kubrick, Tarkovsky, and over time built a film library at home. In Russia I graduated with masters in physics, wrote scientific papers, and did some experiments with superconductivity. Following the fall of the Soviet Union, my family immigrated to the United States in 1994, and I couldn’t continue with science. I had to look for a job, and found one in a Brooklyn hardware store making four bucks an hour. Fifteen years later, I was working in the one of the most prestigious firms on Wall Street. If you ask me what these fifteen years went, I will tell you they felt like one monolithic block of an unconscious process that I became a part of for a while. My background, together with my interest in films, triggered an idea for a movie I might write one day. But I never thought I would ever leave the comfort of Wall Street and become a filmmaker and give myself a chance to make it. Then at some point, I asked myself an important question: why not do something that I always wanted to do? Subconsciously I always was attracted to any art form, but consciously I always neglected it, or maybe suppressed it. In the end, I answered the question. I left Wall Street for good, and started this film, and I couldn’t be happier I found an unbelievable crew that believes in my script. I found actors who connect with my characters. Everyone who is a part of this film production is creative, inspired, and talented, and I’m proud to be their producer and director.  “Pisces of an Unconscious Mind” is my creative statement. It’s my baby, and is a personal story for me. But, as we’ve progressed in this movie-making process, I’ve discovered talents around me. I’ve discovered new friends. A new life. And I’ve welcomed collaboration.   No question, finishing the film is an important first step for me in my new career, and for us as a production team. We are excited to submit “Pisces” to festivals around the world and share our unique story with audiences. Once finished, we plan to begin production on another film; this former Wall Street worker has other ideas to develop and create with his trusted crew; ideas that he’s been holding, but never dared to implement. That’s quite a unique path. How has your experience been as a crowdfunding pioneer in the world of short film in New York and beyond - how are your supporters responding? A few of my supporters said to me that they always knew that I was an artist. Others commented that what I have started is “very cool.” Trading the financial services industry for an artist life was a very tough decision. School, job, time, friends, environment, schedule — everything I have built and created over time all of a sudden changes. But on this stage I can say, if you have a vision, people go after you and believe in you. And I believe I have one. My Director of Photography mentioned that this is a unique film in a way because, in his experience, most low budget independent films shot in New York are filmed in NYC not outside of the city. “Pisces” is filmed in multiple locations outside and inside too. We had to wake up at 2 am drive 3.5 hours away. Finish at 7 pm. Drive back to NYC to be here at 11 pm and then to be on the set at 3 am. We didn’t sleep for 48 hours. My sound boom engineer showed up at my place at 1:30 am. He didn’t sleep and looked tired. I mentioned to him that the inverter that we were using on the set was not working. Where would you look for a new inverter at 2 am? He had a cup of coffee. Picked up the phone and started to call laces and said: “Let’s go” We jumped into the car and drove to Home Depot here in Brooklyn. It was closed, of course, but then we saw a few people outside. We stopped, stepped out. I ran towards them with an old inverter. I told the story that the set is supposed to start at 3 am, and if we don’t have the inverter now, the production won’t start. One of them, the night shift manager, I guess, disappeared, but then came back with the new inverter for us. “Here, take it, do your art” he said. I hugged him, jumped into a car. Left. And we used it without a problem. That lamp on the poster is using the power from it! Film production is really something unbelievable. Things happened left and right for me and I felt as a director / producer I just needed to prevent “disasters” that could potentially damage the project.  We were shooting in Manhattan, and one of the scenes was next to the telephone booth in the financial district in the middle of a weekday afternoon. We had a steady cam, and the actor was supposed to come to the phone both and talk. While we were shooting, I just hated the sun rays that were falling on the phone and on his face. I could not help, but we were taking probably 10 takes, and none of them was working. I said to my DP, let’s go somewhere else and shoot more along our story board. We left, but then in an hour, we came back to add that scene. When we came closer to that phone, I realized it was blocked by a UPS truck, and the driver was unloading something.  I ran towards him and pleaded him to move the truck. He looked at me as if I was mad, then I hugged him. Why? I don’t know. He said, well, I will move the truck now, if you want. I felt something inside of me boiling. I hugged him. One of my crew members asked me why I did it. “I would do anything,” I said, “to make my day”. I think our supporters need to know what real filmmaking process is sometimes. It is a hard work behind the scenes. Our van was broken into, I had to replace the rear window on the way back to the car rentals. Nothing was taken, the window was oscillating on one screw. I guess the thief was screamed off. But, that’s another minor story, and my PA left a key inside of it and locked all doors,  so we could not open it. But those are different stories. I would probably mention another time :). All I can say now, that on the set, I felt that my crew gives me so much energy and power through the film creation that nothing can withstand it to let us go. But who are our supporters now? My wife, Kate! Without her, this film would not happen. She believes in me and has encouraged me like nobody else to pursue my dreams. My friends! Incredibly supportive. I recently had a dinner with one of my friends, who has supported me tremendously in my film journey. One day, he and his wife were sitting silently on the roof when I kept talking endlessly none stop about the film. After a while, they said to me: “We never have seen you so happy in your life as you are right now”. I realized than that I am on the right track. He lended me his Cannon 5D 3 months ago, and he’s wondering if he’ll ever get it back. Two more scenes to go. Sorry, Nik! My crew! A special place in the process I would like to allocate to David Berman. I have spent a lot of time discussing the plot with David, who is an actor, director, editor, and writer. I cast David as my lead, but he has told me how deeply he connects to my story, and, overtime, his role has evolved into something collaborative. From day one he contributed his experience as a filmmaker, and his ideas and suggestions What it was exactly, I cannot exactly tell. I think we’ve become creative partners on this project Richard Manichello -  a leading actor in the film. When I first met Richard, I had no doubt that he would play the perfect Fisherman. He brought this incredible energy, knowledge, maturity, and uniqueness that made us all proud and inspired to work with him.  Katya Austin - an Art Director and FX Designer. Katya was the first crew member on board. I was looking for an FX designer and sent her my script first. Katya said, after she read it, that she was in “because the story “is bold”. Katya endlessly has contributed her energy, creative thought, sense of design, time into our project. Without Katya, it would be impossible to complete what we’ve completed today. Her art is unique, and I feel lucky to have her on my team. John Arthur Kelly and Steve Brown - Directors of Photography - essential work has been done. They have provided incredible energy, expertise, and leadership on the set. And the rest of the crew, who are really true troopers and supporters of our film, including Jason Melani, Meagan Hester, Jordana Davis without them, we would really would not be to do what we did today, and there is really much more to do, and that is why we are on RocketHub now! You’ve built a lot of momentum quickly. Any advice for Creatives looking to crowdfund a similar project? I think the most important thing is vision. I mentioned this before and feel it’s worth repeating. If you believe in your project and have a vision of what you are doing, it’s like you posess a magnet attracting everything, including, creativity, productivity, luck, hope, and funding.   From storyboard to music, voiceovers, color correction…  everything is based on your vision. We were shooting somewhere in midtown, and it just wasn’t working for me. We grabbed a cab drove to downtown and shot the scene within an hour somewhere on the empty street that just worked perfectly. In Midtown, we were trying and trying and trying and it all felt like a waste of time and energy. I stopped and asked myself, is this really what I want? And this is it.This question is so important sometimes. You need to stop, step back, evaluate, realize what is wrong, and listen to yourself. Hide your ego. Listen to yourself. And this is what our film is about, actually. It is an allegory, told through imagery and poetry, which I suppose is why it resonates for many who read about out it, and/or see the trailer. If you hide your ego, you do what is right. Go for it. Don’t stop. Listen to others, collaborate. Create. Don’t look back. This is what I have realized in seven months and counting of making my first film. People sense confidence. If you believe in your vision, others will, too. IF people believe in you, you will be surrounded by creative talents that trigger and multiply the results of your vision. I am honored to work with people who contribute their creative talents to my process and believe that what we are building together is real. It’s like building a dream with multiple hands. I guess what I am saying — if you have a dream - go for it, and find people who dream it, too. You have us convinced - we believe in Gleb. Thank you for the extremely candid and deep interview. Learn more about Gleb’s film and jump onboard this adventure. -Vlad

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  • July 28, 2011

Artsicle Photography Show Lineup Announced!

We are proud to unveil the artists selected for the Artiscle Photography Show. These five selected photographers will have their work shown at the World Monuments Fund Gallery located in the heart of Manhattan – and have their work distributed through Artsicle’s curated online marketplace. Hats off to all the fine photographers that submitted their work. The bulk of the submissions were top notch, and the RocketHub A&R Team wishes we had extra space to include much of the work entered. The final artists were selected based on their feedback and scoring from the judges, as well as the ability to effectively mobilize their fan-bases through RocketHub’s crowdsourcing mechanism…a hearty congrats to the final lineup! And special thanks to our judges - Alex Moore of Death & Taxes; Director of Photography for Quiksilver, Jason Murray; and Alexis Tryon, CEO of Artsicle. "RocketHub is excited to provide a next step for artists within our community", says co-founder and CEO Brian Meece. "Many of these photographers are already using our platform to raise thousands of dollars - now they are gaining access to next steps in their careers, with their own gallery show in NYC. That’s what LaunchPad is all about." Email us at for an invite to the gala on August 5th (supply very limited). The event will include press folks, art industry pros, and a special live acoustic performance from previous LaunchPad musical artist - Joshua Reuben Lewis and NONVIOLENCE. Here is the final Artsicle Photography Show lineup, along with samples of their photography - enjoy! John Crandall - Buffalo, NY "I am a photographer and traveler of the world, staying off the beaten path to get amazing photos and experience new culture." Laura Boyd - New York, NY "My photography business focuses on weddings, portraits, and boudoir, but I LOVE travel photography, too." Phillip Robbins - Newfoundland, Canada  "The relevance of this part of my Faces series are the implied narratives and relationships that the viewer creates between people, even if those people are simply photographs on a wall." Zoltán Balogh - Budapest, Hungary "Find the beauty and peace in the changing world." Jo Arellanes - Atlanta, GA "My photography is filled with small moments. The passing chance of angles, light, and design. It’s in these moments I feel like I can stop the world from spinning around me and see where I am."

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  • July 25, 2011

Annie Dressner Premieres New Music Video on RocketHub Campaign

NYC singer/songwriter Annie Dressner is using her RocktHub campaign to premiere a music video for the song “September” - which was produced by Anthony Rizzo. The tune and video are part of her new work entitled “Strangers Who Knew Each Others Names.”   "I feel that the record gets the songs across in a similar way as when I play live…All of these songs were written for myself, and to share them, well, that in itself is quite exciting!" - Annie Dressner Photo by Shervin Lainez 

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  • July 23, 2011

Toronto’s That Choir Inspires Global Support

That Choir, conducted by Craig Pike, is one of Toronto’s newest and most exciting Chamber Choirs. The group has gone to their fans and music-lovers around the world to raise the funds needed to record its first album. I had the pleasure to speak with Craig about his inspirational campaign and about the lessons of crowdfunding. What was the inspiration behind the music project you are currently running on RocketHub?  Why is it important to you? That Choir was formed 3 years ago as a casual opportunity to bring 14 friends together and share a musical experience every two weeks. At the end of 4 months of rehearsal we performed a concert of 8 pieces of a capella music for 40 mutual friends at Trinity Chapel in Toronto, Ontario.  Since it’s inception, we have grown into a 32 member chamber choir of auditioned members of the Toronto Arts Community and beyond. We now perform to audiences of up to 250 people and our concert programs include up to 14 pieces of new and traditional choral works that include new Canadian Composers. The next step for That Choir is to record it’s first album. The groups artistic integrity has grown as has its audience base, so NOW is the best time to do so - and we are thrilled and excited for this venture! Choral Music is an integral part of the Arts. It’s marriage of storytelling with musical creation results in the ultimate experience for the listener. By recording our first album, That Choir is hoping to reach a larger audience, and expose more and more people to this wonderful art form ! How has your experience been as a crowdfunding pioneer in the world of choir music - how are your supporters responding? That Choir’s experience as a crowdfunding pioneer in the world of choral music has been an immensely positive one! I believe that everything happens when it is meant to happen…and NOW is the time for us to be undertaking such a venture. The world of fundraising is changing, and to offer patrons of That Choir the chance to contribute online at RocketHub, and also get rewards back in return from their contribution is not only convenient but creative! Being a new choir, we are financially dependent on the public and our audiences. Every contribution HELPS That Choir achieve our goal. The fact that you can contribute from $20 - $10,000 offers everyone a chance to support the arts dependent on their financial situation.  As a result, our supporters are contributing accordingly and generously. In our first 10 days of fundraising, That Choir has received contributions ranging from $20 - $1,000. We look forward to what the next 80 days of this campaign with RocketHub has in store for us!!! You’ve built a lot of momentum quickly. Any advice for Creatives looking to crowdfund a similar community project? Believe in your project and know your audience. That Choir, from the beginning, has been a community. From its members to our audience, we all love getting together to create music, and more importantly SHARING it. If you believe in your project - so will others - and those “others” will spread the word.  Be ambitious. Be smart. And ask yourself the tough questions. Is now the right time to be fundraising? What do you truly hope to gain from fundraising online with RocketHub? Are you willing to put the DAILY work of getting the word out to your fanbase and beyond?  And finally, you must show that what you’re fundraising for has integrity! Be clear about your mandate, and show the world what you have to offer thru video’s and audio clips.  Thank you Craig and thank you That Choir. Your crowdfunding advice is very appropriate and poignant. Learn more about this cool group and get involved. -Vlad

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  • July 22, 2011

Crowdfunding Spotlight With East Village Artist, Adnan Sabir

Adnan Sabir, an East Village singer/songwriter, arrived in New York from Karachi by way of West Haven, Connecticut. His music, much like his journey, is a reflection of his diversity and a personal evolution. RocketHub caught up with Adnan to discuss the creative process and his crowdfunding campaign called “Don’t Forget to Water Your Little Flowers” - that has one week left to go on RocketHub. What was the inspiration behind your project “Don’t Forget to Water Your Little Flowers” you are currently running on RocketHub?  Why is it important to you? Music became an important part of my life about 10 years ago. After being in a cover band for a couple of years I decided to take recordings of a few cover songs to some “people in the industry”.  They said they liked my voice but that I should come back once I had more original material. I walked away with my head down. Writing didn’t come easy, I wrote my first song “Daddy” about three years later. I was proud of it but still still uncertain of the genre I wanted to pursue. I decided to come to New York City. From the sheer musical talent I was surrounded by in Alphabet City, the important things in music became clearer. I started sitting in to sing a couple of songs here and there with some musicians I admired greatly. Then about a year ago I was down on my luck and had been laid off and the city had taken it’s toll. Pressing on, I reached out to a producer on a whim with little hope of anything actually happening in terms of recording. I was wrong. I had a collection of songs ready to go and we were ready to make some great recordings. How has your experience been as a crowdfunder in the world of music - how are your fans responding? The support has been pretty unbelievable. I have become overwhelmed a couple of times during the course of this campaign with the enthusiasm I’ve seen from friends, family, and fans. They believe in my talent, trust in my perseverance, and the results will speak for themselves hopefully. Any advice for Creatives looking to crowdfund a project? First and foremost, the RocketHub team has been great and they’ve been there whenever I needed them. The guidelines I received prior to starting my project were really valuable and helped me get a good grasp of not only explaining the relatively new idea of crowdfunding to potential project fuelers but also managing communication and my personal network which brings me to point #2. You have to have a network and know as Brian Meece puts it the “depth and the width” of it. Width being the number of people in your network and the depth being the depth in your relationship. I started collecting emails from friends, family, co-workers, fellow musicians, and fans every chance I got over the last few years. This helped me maximize the width of my network. I’ve had co-workers I haven’t seen in years contribute to this project which is a great thing to be able to say. I only wish I had done an even better job with keeping up the mailing list. Talk to everyone, get their contacts, you never know when it may come in handy. That said, if you’re not already selling thousands of records, I believe the depth of the network becomes more important. To sum it up: you really have to believe in yourself and your project otherwise there is little hope of getting others behind it. Being involved and establishing your network as I mentioned above is important. Along with the network communication is just as important. A network is useless if no one knows what’s going on in the project or they’re not reminded of it in their already busy lives. Lastly, and also obviously, hardwork is important. The more clearly your hardwork and passion are displayed in your existing work the easier it will be for people to get behind the project you start. You are spot on Adnan! Thanks for the good words and we are proud to have you in our Creative Community. - Brian

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  • July 19, 2011