Grants and loans available for new and seasoned artist entrepreneurs
Artists seeking to launch or expand a business venture may apply for grants or loans designed for varying levels of business readiness. Previous Artists Ventures Initiative grantees are eligible to apply for a new Business Builder Loan program through ArtsGrowSC.
Christine Eade of Ladson is the first artist to receive a business loan through ArtsGrowSC, a partnership between the S.C. Arts Commission and Community Works, a community development financial institution (CDFI) headquartered in Greenville. Eadie will use her loan to build and upfit a gypsy wagon to support her traveling tintype photography business.
“It’s been a dream of mine for several years to build a gypsy-wagon style portable studio,” said Eadie. “An historically “period correct” studio is ideal for my business, because I mainly work at historic venues and events making vintage looking photographs called “tintypes” (a handmade process invented in 1851).
“Being a divorced mother putting my daughter through college on my own, I simply couldn’t afford to use my limited funds to invest in building a wagon. This loan from Community Works has been such a blessing! It has given me the boost I needed towards making my business stand out even more and set me apart from the crowd. What I do is already unique, so I’m excited to get out on the road and travel to more and venues and events and bring my business to more people. I am excited about branching out into other areas and renting out my wagon as a digital photo booth.”
Eadie received an Artists Ventures Initiative grant from the Arts Commission in 2016.
Artists Ventures Initiative grants encourage and enable the creation of new artist-driven, arts-based business ventures that will provide career satisfaction and sustainability for S.C. artists. Individuals and collaboratives may use AVI funding to help launch a new venture or significantly alter an existing venture. A one-time project/single purchase may be awarded up to $3,500. An ongoing business venture may be awarded up to $5,000.
The AVI grant program is a two-part process, with letters of intent due Jan. 11, 2018. Selected applicants will be invited to develop a full grant proposal.
For more information about these opportunities, contact Joy Young.