South Carolina Arts Commission

Artist Entrepreneur Incubator

It’s time to level-up your arts business.

The Artist Entrepreneur Incubator is a six-week virtual program that gives artists living and working in South Carolina practical skills to level-up their freelance businesses.

Participants will learn skills for starting, running, and keeping their arts practice business-savvy, capitalizing on opportunity, and continuing to invest in their own creativity.

AEI participants in 2022/2023 will receive step-by-step coaching on:

  • shaping their big, creative ideas into marketable products;
  • forming a viable business model;
  • and using that model to achieve sustainable success.

These virtual marketing workshops will be facilitated by Newberry College Assistant Professor Paul D. Smith Jr., who specializes in guiding the growth of small and existing businesses.

In addition to honing a business-savvy skillset, participants who fully complete the course and the course survey will receive a $200 honorarium and a one-hour consultation with Professor Smith. Participants are required to attend each of the six scheduled sessions.


The ideal candidate is a mid-career artist with an independent body of work. They have received recognition through publication or public presentation of their work and are prepared to market their work to a broader audience.

Participant requirements:
  • At least 18 years of age
  • Current resident of South Carolina
  • Not enrolled in a degree-granting program

One Columbia logoThe AEI is a collaboration between the SCAC and One Columbia for Arts & Culture. It is open to artists of all 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 creative collaborations among Columbia residents, the cultural community, and city government to further build a vibrant community. Learn more on

2022/2023 Details

  • Timeline
    • Applications open Monday, Dec. 12!
    • Applications close Sunday, Jan. 22 at 11:45 p.m. ET. Use the link below.
    • Cohorts notified Friday, Jan. 27
    • Classes begin Tuesday, Feb. 7

    Held virtually on the following dates:

    • Stand Out from the Crowd • Feb. 7
    • The Entrepreneurial Artist • Feb. 14
    • Bank on your Success • Feb. 21
    • The Art of Cash Flow • Feb. 28
    • Business Model Canvas • March 6
    • Skills that Pay the Bills • March 13

I’m here to help!

If you are seeking more program information, please contact Deputy Director Ce Scott-Fitts ( | 803.734.8203).