Dreaming of producing a ground-breaking photo project, but lack the funding? Follow the lead of hundreds of other photographers
Kickstart Your Project
To fund your photography through Kickstarter, you’ll first have to meet its standards for what defines a creative project—they won’t judge your photography, but look elsewhere if all you want are some new lenses. “This is not just general fundraising,” Strickler says. “It’s something specific.”
Nor is it “a way to make a quick buck,” adds Ludwig.
The most important step? Take the process seriously. The most successful proposals typically post a great promotional video, offer meaningful rewards, and engage backers with regular progress reports. Trying to identify what makes a project successful, the company posts (and updates) its findings in the “Kickstarter School” on its site. Crispin says he followed Kickstarter’s advice to the letter.
Since the entire process takes place on the Internet, photographers without social media skills must adapt. Says Krisanne Johnson, “You have to become really savvy, fast.”
Most of all, try not to think of crowdfunding as a glorified tip jar. The crowd has a tendency to speak with its wallet, funding only those projects it deems worthy. Kickstarter especially serves as a litmus test for viability: Only 44 percent of projects reach their goal, yet 85 percent of the money pledged goes to successful projects.
So maybe it’s time to put that crazy idea out there—the world might just let you know how much it loves your crazy.