Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Being a Patron

For centuries, the main way artists of all kinds made a living was to have a Patron.  Someone who would sponsor the artist, and basically pay them to make art.  Whether it be painting, sculpture, poetry, or prose, artists were prized members of ancient societies for their expertise and creativity.  But, somewhere along the way, the idea of “Patronage” fell out of vogue.

In recent years the internet has sort of reintroduced the idea to us.  Through crowd-funding, and other means of direct payment, those who enjoy the work of artists can give them a little (or even a lot) for their efforts.  Personally, I have backed a couple of Kickstarters, and donated to a couple of pages.  And today I’m here to talk about another such opportunity.

Those of you who have followed my blog for a long time may recall that I like to gush a bit about Scott Oden.  He’s a personal friend and an inspiration.  We share a common love of all things orcs and Robert E. Howard (to varying degrees, and we do have our good-natured disagreements even on those subjects).  Scott is a very talented storyteller, and I was fortunate enough to be on the beta-reader list for his latest work.  An historical fantasy entitled A Gathering of Ravens.

I will start by saying that it is an amazing story, well-written, filled with action, danger, intrigue, and some pretty thought-provoking ideas.  I could go on and on, but I think I should let him talk about his book himself (once he settles on a blog for it, I will share that).  Suffice it to say, I am as eager for you to read it as I am to read the final product.

Anyways, back to the whole Patron thing, Scott has opened a GoFundMe site, Keep the Words Flowing.  Honestly, I think he should set his goal higher, but he’s pretty humble.  So, I urge you, as would-be patrons of the arts, to visit his page, and donate what you can.


Charles Gramlich said...

I'm very torn about this crowd funding thing. I guess I'm still working out my feelings about it as a whole, though I've seen many worthy individual artists and projects, such as Scott

Tom Doolan said...

Crowd funding is a great way to raise production funds. I've backed a couple where the funds raised went directly to the costs of producing a specific product. However, I also like the idea of supporting a working artist/writer/etc. by giving them a little financial boost to relieve the stress of the non-art life around them. It also shows appreciation in a way that a simple sales report can't, I feel.