South Carolina Arts Commission

South Carolina Arts Commission

Artist Entrepreneur Incubator

Make a living with your art form.

New in 2021! The Artist Entrepreneur Incubator (AEI) is a series of monthly discipline-based interactive workshops for artists who are interested in transitioning their craft into a business.

Workshops are led by artists of all disciplines, arts consultants, and educators.  Workshops include information on basic business, licensing, marketing, contracts, and identifying resources for support and sustainability.

A partnership

One Columbia logoThe AEI is a virtual series is a collaboration between the SCAC and One Columbia for Arts & Culture available to artists across disciplines who live and work throughout South Carolina… not just Columbia.

One Columbia for Arts and Culture is a non-profit organization working to promote collaboration among citizens, the cultural community, and city government through celebrations of Columbia’s arts and historic treasures. Its goal is to enhance the quality of life for all residents, attract tourism to Columbia, and further build a vibrant and equitable cultural community. Learn more on OneColumbiaSC.com.

Registration fees

Each workshop costs $10 per artist to attend virtually. However, artists who are teaching artists, have received individual artist grants from the SCAC (e.g. Emerging Artist, Fellowships, etc.) at any point, and/or are currently included in the S.C. Arts Directory may attend free of charge.

The Series

**This workshop is a pre-requisite for attending future entrepreneurial training workshops in more focused fields of art.**

Better Business for Creatives is a “how to” workshop for starting/operating a scalable, profitable business.

With a focus on the arts/artists, Better Business for Creatives provides an overview of three critical disciplines necessary for a successful business:

  1. The functional BUSINESS MODEL
  2. MARKETING strategies/tactics for the presentation of your art
  3. ACCESS TO RESOURCES needed to fulfill the business model and the marketing requirements for success

Marketing for creative entrepreneurs will focus on communicating your unique value proposition finding and reaching your audience and measuring the success of your campaigns.

The city of Columbia Office of Business Opportunities will cover the resources it can provide to all business within our community. OBO also has a vast network of community partners with whom businesses can connect with depending on their specific needs.

  • 6-7:30 p.m.
  • Virtual format

Presenters

Tom Ledbetter is a management professional with 40+ years’ experience in the advanced manufacturing, technology development, small business management, and higher education sectors.  His experience includes line, staff, and executive management responsibilities across a broad spectrum of organizational disciplines, in both public- and private-sector organizations, and in launching and running his own businesses. Since 2003, Tom has been an employee of Midlands Technical College in Columbia, most recently as associate vice provost for entrepreneurship and educational support. His small business consulting business, Next Phase Management LLC, was established in 2002. He is a graduate of the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill.

 

Dr. Kasie Whitener is founder of Clemson Road Creative and lecturer in entrepreneurship at the University of South Carolina. She was named a 2021 Fresh Voice in the Humanities for her work with the South Carolina Writers’ Association and on the radio show “Write On SC.” She is the author of Practical Entrepreneurism (Great River Learning, 2020) and co-author of Redesign Work Volume 1: A Beginner’s Guide to Autonomy (Clemson Road Publishing 2020). “Write On SC” was a recipient of the 2019 Artists’ Ventures Initiative grant from the SCAC.

 

Ayesha Driggers is the program administrator for the City of Columbia Office of Business Opportunities. In her role, Ayesha provides, coordinates, and implements training, counseling, financial technical assistance, and other strategies for small, minority, and women-owned businesses to advance their economic growth and to compete in the market. With almost 20 years as a public servant in state and local government, she serves as an advocate for our small business community. Ayesha received both her bachelor’s degree in political science and master’s degree in public administration from the University of South Carolina.

 


About the City of Columbia Office of Business Opportunities

The Office of Business Opportunities (OBO) is committed to supporting initiatives that benefit small, minority, veteran, and women owned businesses located in, or that want to do business with, the City of Columbia. This is accomplished by

providing creative financing,  technical assistance and capacity building opportunities that contribute to the economic growth of all communities. Learn more on ColumbiaSC.net.

 

Being a musician is not just a matter of loving the music; it requires finding ways to create the music that you love while earning money! The modern successful musician has to learn how to capitalize on and exploit as many income streams as possible in order to pursue their passions. This session will cover the basics of how to create income streams as a performing musician.

  • 6-7:30 p.m.
  • Virtual format
  • $10 registration fee (see exceptions above)
  • Register here!
Workshop Outline
  • Copyright Registration
  • How to Get a Performing Gig (and keep it!)
  • Live Performing Contracts
  • Remote Collaboration

Presenters

Trumpeter, composer, educator, and technologist Dr. Matthew White is a curious musician, often blurring the lines between musical styles and conventions. Before entering academia, he was a freelance and session musician in Nashville and Miami. He holds degrees from the University of North Florida and the University of Miami and has appeared on numerous albums, radio broadcasts, and television shows, performing and composing music for artists as varied as: Rihanna, Becca Stevens, The Tommy Dorsey Orchestra, Victor Wooten, Steve Bailey, Oscar DeLeon, Duranice Pace, Charlie Peacock, the Czech Republic Arts Ministry, the Mavericks, and Jeff Coffin, in addition to various other artists, ensembles, symphonies, and big bands.

As a composer, Matt’s music has been described as “rhythmically brash and invigorating” by the Washington Post, with “a knack for sweeping, cinematic statements” by Downbeat Magazine. While rooted in the jazz tradition, his music often draws on non-musical inspiration, such as local culture, literature, scientific phenomenon, or personal experiences. Matt is a Bach Trumpet, Aston Microphones, and Patrick Mouthpiece performing artist. He has two new upcoming albums – Lowcountry (featuring the St. Helena Island Singers), and Dolly (a reimagining of early Dolly Parton music).

 

Jeremy Polley has over 20 years of experience in the music industry. He has nearly 10 years’ experience in musical instrument retail, working clients and vendors such as Peavey, Fender, and ESP. Prior to moving to South Carolina, Mr. Polley ran a successful teaching studio in Decatur, Illinois, growing enrollment to over 50 students. He was able to utilize his teaching experience and relationships with local educators and administrators to build partnerships with area middle and high schools, establishing after school guitar programs. He is a co-founder of the Summer Guitar Camps at Millikin University, which were the spiritual predecessors to the very successful Rock Band U programs currently in place. Mr. Polley earned his bachelor’s degree in commercial music from Millikin University in Decatur, Illinois before arriving at the University of South Carolina. While attending UofSC, Mr. Polley earned a master’s in music in music history and performance – guitar.

There are many definitions and applications for public art and art in public places/spaces. Participants will learn about the fundamentals of public art. The session is designed to engage professional artists by sharing information and conducting a hands-on process for applying for and understanding public art opportunities.

Artists of all disciplines are encouraged to attend.

  • 6-7:30 p.m.
  • Virtual format
  • $10 registration fee (see exceptions above)
  • Register here!
Workshop Outline
  • Definitions of Public Art
  • Selection Processes
  • Managing Expectations
  • Contracts & Deliverables

Presenter

Constance Y. White is an artist, consultant, and public art management professional from Dallas who works to activate public spaces and to provoke social change. She is a graduate of the Meadows School of Art at Southern Methodist University.

For over two decades, White has worked with both public and private organizations in Texas, the District of Columbia, Southern California, Alabama, and the Carolinas. White was the first public art coordinator for the city of Dallas. She launched the first comprehensive arts program at San Diego International Airport.

White has served as an advisor, presenter and panelist for numerous organizations including: the American Association of Airport Executives, the Americans for the Arts, the Public Art Coalition of Southern California, Dallas Fort Worth International Airport, PechaKucha, the cities of Austin and Dallas, and One Columbia (South Carolina). She most recently joined the Arts + Health committee of the Dallas Business Council for the Arts and serves on the board of Inspire Art Dallas.

Currently, she is a partner consultant on other design teams and arts management firms. She is the founder and lead creative of her own consultancy, SLDcreative.

Blue themed horizontal graphic with a person aiming a camera at the viewer. Text reads: "Got what it takes to be the next media darling? You can make a living with your art. Multimedia... Next up from the Artist Entrepreneur Incubator on Dec. 7."

This course is designed to cover LLC basics, pricing and how to determine your ideal client. This workshop will cover some of the following topics dealing with multimedia businesses as it relates specifically photography, videography, and creative writing. Other areas of focus include pricing your service, multiple streams of income, identifying customers, Geographic area, attracting and retaining clients.

  • 6-7:30 p.m.
  • Virtual format
  • $10 registration fee (see exceptions above)
  • Register here!
Workshop Outline
  • What you need to call yourself a business
    • Corporate structure and why you need it.
    • Insurance
    • Bank accounts
    • Credit accounts
  • Pricing your service or product
    • All money isn’t good money
    • People die from exposure
    • Multiple streams of income
  • Determining your ideal customer
    • Geographical area
    • Businesses or Consumers … or both?
    • How to attract the clients you want

Presenter

Dr. Thaddeus W Jones Jr. is a writer, director, instructor and storyteller. Between 2011-2013 he earned a master’s in entertainment business and a master of fine arts in creative writing from Full Sail University. He earned his doctorate in business from Northcentral University in 2020.

Thaddeus is the director of programming for the Nickelodeon Theater in Columbia. His focus is on filmmaking and the business of multimedia. He began his career editing self-published books and converting other authors’ self-published works into screenplays. He owns a production company, Fanatik Productions, LLC., where he has produced several award-winning short films.

The organizations he works with include: 1 Million Cups, SC Inventor Forum, and the Hampton Arts Council, where he recently created a summer camp to help middle and high school age children embrace storytelling in rural communities.

Visual artist and educator Mary Gilkerson will lead a conversation around the five pillars every artist needs to have in place in order to thrive in the rapidly changing landscape we find ourselves in. Having these pillars in place gives us the flexibility to pivot and respond quickly to the sudden changes we face, as well as giving us increased control over both our careers and our impact on our communities and the world beyond, both online and offline. Participants will leave with a checklist and assessment of their next steps for growing their own thriving practice.

Then, Tiffany Thomas leads a section on social media’s expansion to many different channels over the last several years. In this workshop, you will learn how to leverage its power by utilizing various platforms, without using ads. By cultivating a community of like minded individuals that enjoy your personality and work, you can open the door to wonderful opportunities, regardless of location.

Artists of all disciplines are encouraged to attend.

  • 6-7:30 p.m.
  • Virtual format
  • $10 registration fee (see exceptions above)
  • Register here!
Workshop Outline (Section I)
  • Pillar #1: Cultivate the Thriving Creative Mindset
  • Pillar #2: Create Compelling Artwork
  • Pillar #3: Build Your Online Platform
  • Pillar #4: Grow Your Own Engaged Audience
  • Pillar #5: Launch Your Work
Workshop Outline (Section II)
  • Developing your unique voice
  • Gaining followers on social media
  • Creating a website
  • Shipping products
  • Social media etiquette

Presenters

Mary Gilkerson is a working visual artist and retired professor of art at Columbia College. Gilkerson holds a Master of Fine Arts in drawing and painting from the University of South Carolina. A native South Carolinian, she splits her time between Columbia the Lowcountry coast in Savannah. She has received grants from the S.C. Arts Commission and the Cultural Council of Richland and Lexington Counties in addition to having been selected as a Southern Arts Federation Fellowship finalist. Her work is in the permanent collections of the Morris Museum of Art, McKissick Museum, Palmetto Health, Morris Communications Company, and Seibels Bruce Group, among others. She has been recognized for excellence in teaching by the South Carolina Independent Colleges and Universities (SCICU).

Tiffany Thomas is a native of South Carolina. Her artwork is centered in being comfortable with being unique. She was raised on a farm with five brothers and sisters. Having siblings shaped her to be imaginative and innovative. She incorporates her childhood into her artwork by using a combination of colors, which are associated with tranquility. Her clay of choice is translucent porcelain, fired with colorful stains and glazes. Her ceramic work focuses on an array of designs; from cups and mugs to light fixtures and table pieces.

Wideman Davis Dance Co-Directors Tanya Wideman-Davis and Thaddeus Davis will lead a conversation on the Ecosystem of the Dance Industry in a Pandemic World. The dialogue will center on what it means to be dance artists working in the southeast region of the U.S., resources and organizations you should know about, and a discussion on the dynamics between agents, presenters, and artists.

Artists of all disciplines are encouraged to attend.

  • 6-7:30 p.m.
  • Virtual format
  • $10 registration fee (see exceptions above)
  • Registration coming soon!
Workshop Outline
  • Being a dancer in the Southeast U.S.
  • Resources and organizations you should know
  • Managing Expectations
  • Dynamics between dancers
    • and agents
    • and presenters
    • and artists

Presenters

Tanya Wideman-Davis is co-artistic director of Wideman/Davis Dance and currently also an associate professor at the University of South Carolina. Wideman-Davis has had an extensive and exciting career as a dancer, choreographer and teacher and holds a Master of Fine Arts from Hollins University/ADF (2012). She has trained with and danced for many of the premier schools and companies in the country including Joffrey Ballet School, Alvin Ailey American Dance Center, Chicago City Ballet, and The Dance Theatre of Harlem. She was given the honor of “Best Female Dancer of 2001-2002” by Dance Europe magazine. As a dancer, Ms. Wideman-Davis has worked with world-renowned dance companies on both coasts, several places in between and internationally, and has teaching experience in the U.S. and abroad. Tanya’s academic and choreographic research, as well as her speaking, examine race, gender, femininity, identity, and location. She was a South Carolina Arts Commission Fellow in Dance Performance in 2020/2021.

Wideman Davis Dance Co-Director Thaddeus Davis is on faculty as an associate professor at The University of South Carolina. He earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Butler University in 1993 and Master of Fine Arts from Hollins University/ADF in 2011. After an extensive performing career with leading professional companies, he continues to perform, research, choreograph, collaborate, and teach. His current research explores the intersections of gender, class, race, and technology through an African American lens and is reflected in his choreography, writings, films, lectures, and panel presentations. Thaddeus is recipient of multiple honors and grants for his work and performed with many companies of renown, including Donald Byrd/The Group (1998-2002), Dance Theater of Harlem (1994-1998), Complexions Contemporary Ballet (1995-2005), Fugate/Bahiri Ballet NY Dance Galaxy (2000-2002), Indianapolis Ballet (1991-1993), Fukuoka City Ballet (1995), and Atlanta Dance Theater (1988).

In Part I of this workshop, writer/producer April C. Turner, of Life As Art Productions, will give touring theatre artist entrepreneurs the “Top 7 Things to Know and 7 Things to Do” for a satisfying & balanced career filled with happy & loyal clients. We will also discuss ways today’s touring theatre artist can navigate new performance pathways during pandemic uncertainties in the industry.

In Part II, we hear from Rodney Rogers and Sharon Graci of Pure Theatre. From not-for-profit models to self-producing, creating theatre demands wearing many hats. In any one production, the theatre artist can be performer, producer, and presenter all rolled into one. Not to mention head of marketing! This workshop looks at the process of theatre making from the granular level to the thousand-foot view. How do we do our best work while holding true to the demands of the form and market?

Artists of all disciplines are encouraged to attend.

  • 6-7:30 p.m.
  • Virtual format
  • $10 registration fee (see exceptions above)
  • Registration coming soon!
Workshop Outline
  • Potential of theatre in community and individuals
  • Production musts
  • Production models
  • How to infuse artistry into every aspect of the practice

Presenters

April C. Turner is a professional writer/producer and content creator specializing in creating cultural arts experiences designed to invite honest conversations about difficult social issues. Her work also uses performing and literary artforms to document historical events, as well as share cultural traditions. An accomplished actress, writer, dancer, and theatre producer, Turner has had principal roles in more than 20 movies and television shows, as well as dozens of commercials and corporate videos. Among her favorite credits are roles in made for television movies such as Eyeborgs (SyFy Channel) and the independent film adaption of Truman Capote’s Other Voices, Other Rooms. Other favorites include roles in productions such as “Good Behavior” (TNT), “Unanswered Prayers” (Lifetime), “Trinity Goodheart” (gmc TV), “Army Wives” (Lifetime), “Ditch Digger’s Daughters” (Family Channel), and the Showtime limited series, “The Good Lord Bird.” Turner also plays Clea in the independent feature, “Discarded Things,” currently streaming on Amazon Prime. Among her produced writing credits are the stage plays, C.O.T.O.: Chocolate on The Outside, Reservations, Starlight and Moonshine Times, Pickle & Lil’junior, Nikky’s Gone, and One Drop of My Blood. She has successfully presented stage productions from New Jersey to Florida to Oklahoma.  Turner’s residencies, workshops and theatrical innovations have made her a favorite among arts presenters, universities, and cultural organizations.

Sharon Graci is the co-founder and artistic director of PURE Theatre. Her leadership has helped PURE Theatre develop into one of the Southeast’s premier theatre companies. She programmed or produced more than 70 regional and 20 world premiere productions and developed multiple programs that heighten PURE’s impact and amplify its position as a “community-building theatre” (Charleston City Paper). She is the recipient of the South Carolina Arts Commission acting fellowship, an alumna of Lincoln Center Director’s Lab, a SC Liberty Fellow and is a member of the Aspen Institute, Aspen Global Leadership Network. Selected directing credits: The Agitators; A Doll’s House, Part 2; Fool For Love; Sweat; If I Forget; The Royale; This Random World; Father Comes Home From The Wars: Parts 1, 2 & 3; Slowgirl; Marie Antoinette; Folly Beach; Penelope; The Birds; The Mountaintop; Sheep’s Clothing; and The Elaborate Entrance of Chad Deity. Selected stage acting credits: Testament of Mary, Rapture, Blister, Burn, Vanya And Sonia And Masha And Spike, Time Stands Still, Hogs, Beauty Queen of Leenane (PURE Theatre); King Lear, Twelfth Night (Actors Theatre of SC); Dancing At Lughnasa (Actor’s Theatre of Charlotte). She has a degree in acting from Augusta State University and studied acting at Point Park University and the Pittsburgh Conservatory of Theatre.

Rodney Lee Rogers is the co-founder of PURE Theatre. Acting credits at PURE include Fully Committed, The Trial of the Gentleman Pirate Stede Bonnet, Underneath the Lintel, The Christians, Glengarry Glen Ross, Penelope, Annapurna, A Behanding in Spokane, Superior Donuts, Up, The Pillowman, The Lonesome West, Cloud Tectonics, Eurydice, and The Tragedian. On television he has appeared on “Ozark,” “One Tree Hill,” “Medicine Ball,” “Army Wives,” and “Reckless.” Directing credits at PURE include Straight White Men, The Beauty Queen of Leenane, Failure: A Love Story, Outside Mullingar, Clybourne Park, Good People, Tell, and Jesus Hopped the “A” Train. His feature film Steaming Milk won runner-up Best Actor and Best Director awards at the 1997 Seattle International Film Festival and was chosen as a Best of the Fest of The Seattle Times and the Seattle Post-Intelligencer. He is a two-time winner of the National/LAFF Screenwriting scholarship and winner of the 2010 Playwriting fellowship from the South Carolina Arts Commission. His plays, including Sic Semper Tyrannis, The Trial of the Gentleman Pirate Stede Bonnet, The Tragedian, Killing Chickens, Fairgrounds, What Comes Around, Tell, Cowboys, and Waffle Haus Christmas, have been produced in New York City, Seattle, Charlotte, Charleston and Plovdiv, Bulgaria.

Literary luminaries from across South Carolina will share their experiences with the business of authorship, the hustle through which a passion for the craft of writing becomes a livelihood. Join city of Charleston Poet Laureate Marcus Amaker, Hub City Press director Meg Reid, and Pat Conroy Literary Center Executive Director Jonathan Haupt for a lively discussion on the treasure trove of resources available to South Carolina writers.

Artists of all disciplines are encouraged to attend.

  • 6-7:30 p.m.
  • Virtual format
  • $10 registration fee (see exceptions above)
  • Registration coming soon!
Workshop Outline
  • Good literary citizenship
  • Pathways to publication
    • Traditional
    • Hybrid
    • Indie
  • Working with agents and editors
  • The business of authorship
    • (How) do writers make money?
    • Who pays for what?
    • What else do writers get paid to do?
  • Resources and organizations you should now

Presenters

Marcus Amaker was named Charleston’s first poet laureate in 2016. In 2021, he became an Academy of American Poets fellow. He’s also the award-winning graphic designer of a national music journal, an electronic musician, the creator of a poetry festival, and a mentor. His poetry has been recognized by The Kennedy Center, American Poets Magazine, The Washington National Opera, The Portland Opera, Button Poetry, NPR, The Chicago Tribune, Washington Post, PBS Newshour, and more. In 2019, he won a Governor’s Arts award in South Carolina, and was named the artist-in-residence of the Gaillard Center, a world-renowned performance and education venue. His poetry has been studied in classrooms around the country, and has been interpreted for ballet, jazz, and opera. Marcus has recorded three albums with Grammy Award-winning drummer and producer Quentin E. Baxter. His ninth book is Black Music Is, from Free Verse Press.

 

Meg Reid is a book designer and writer living in South Carolina. She is the Director of Hub City Press in Spartanburg, where she finds and champions exciting new voices from the American South. An editor and book designer, her essays have appeared online in outlets like DIAGRAM, Oxford American, and the Rumpus. She holds an MFA in Nonfiction from University of North Carolina Wilmington, where she served as assistant editor of the literary magazine, Ecotone, and worked for the literary imprint Lookout Books. She also writes extensively about all areas of design.

 

Jonathan Haupt is the executive director of the nonprofit Conroy Center and the former director of the University of South Carolina Press, where he created the Story River Books fiction imprint with Pat Conroy, named by Garden & Gun magazine as one of “the top ten things to love about the South.” Haupt’s book reviews and author interviews have appeared in the Charleston Post and Courier, Lowcountry Weekly, Beaufort Lifestyle, Savannah Morning News’ Beacon magazine, Pink magazine, Southern Review of Books, and Southern Writers Magazine’s Suite T blog. He is co-editor with Nicole Seitz of the anthology Our Prince of Scribes: Writers Remember Pat Conroy, the recipient of seventeen book awards. He is host of the Live from the Pat Conroy Literary Center podcast on the Authors on the Air Global Radio Network and an associate producer of the TELLY Award-winning ETV author interview program By the River. In 2020, Haupt was recognized with the Doug Marlette Literacy Leadership Award presented by the Pulpwood Queens, the largest book club in the U.S.

Workshop information is being confirmed. Check back again soon!

Questions?

If you are seeking more program information, please contact Ce Scott-Fitts (803.734.8203 | cscottfitts@arts.sc.gov), Program Director for Artist Services.