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Did you guys see my video about Patreon? Well in case you missed it, here is my little intro to this platform.
Now for a little background on this recent embarkment!
For the past year or so now I've been working at documenting my artistic processes - from video footage to chemical experiments (pretty in-depth ones!) with the coffee itself. Ever since I began painting with 'the irresistible bean' I've been scanning the internet constantly for tips, best-practices, really ANY information that other coffee-artists have shared. To my surprise, it seems I've finally reached the end of google's knowledge! While there are a few forums here and there with people asking questions and posing the problems with the medium, there seems to be a lack of solutions out there. I have yet to find an artist who has dedicated their knowledge on the subject, aside from just how they paint in their style - the same type of information you'd get from studying traditional watercolour artists.
That's not to say there are not serious professional coffee painters. I have had the opportunity to connect with a few internationally, mostly via Instagram - and that's a real perk! Check out Ekene Ngige, for example, I love his work.
But back to my disclaimers - I fully realize I DID NOT INVENT COFFEE PAINTING. Once in a while I'll have someone ask me about my process, and then sheepishly add "I won't steal your idea, though." And while I'd like to relish the fact that I'm doing something pretty unique, in the end I've gotta just say, "great artists steal."
So Lauren what does this have to do with Patreon? All of that process-documentation I was talking about - I'm hoping that Patreon will be a great way to start sharing it with the world. I will always be posting updates on my work, but I realize that only a few people might be very interested in the WHY, the WHAT... the 5-W's. Those same people are usually my biggest supporters, or other artists who are eager to learn.
I'm learning to strike a balance between sharing and giving my work to the world, but also valuing myself enough to stop giving it away unfairly.
Payment, pricing and valuing your work is a touchy topic that every artist wrestles with, so I'll save my deeper thoughts on that for another article (or ten...) My audience size at the moment is fairly modest so I also realize it might take a while for this little venture to grow into something more. Despite that though, here's to another risk in the adventure known as art!
Since I'm being transparent here, why not share some of my current (maybe passing) dreams for this platform, should I someday be able to reach my goals and get enough support!
How cool would it be to see:
Live Streaming & Online Painting Courses
Travelling Painting Demos and Free Painting Classes
Donated Paintings for Charities and Causes... and of course, MORE!
When I decided to pursue a career as an artist, I knew I wanted to bless people and let my gift continue as just that... A GIFT. My hope is that an account with Patreon will be a step in that direction - a way that I can receive a little more so that I am more free to GIVE.
In my next journal entry I'll share with you what benefits I'll be offering to my Patrons, for the first round of this experiment. I should probably insert "benefits are subject to change" yadda yadda, for when someone stumbles across this article ten years from now ;)
THANK YOU everyone who's with me, and for those of you who consider a pledge of even $1 a month... it means the world!!
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