A few months ago we covered all the different ways that using Kickstarter can help jump-start your art career, but we never actually got around to finding great examples of artists and organizations that were using Kickstarter effectively – shame on us. The good news is that Kickstarter is still very much alive and…err….kicking and more artists than ever are using the website to crowd-fund some incredible projects. We weren’t about to let another opportunity to help shine the spotlight on some emerging artists so we decided to do a little digging and unearth five of our favorite projects in September that we think are especially deserving of funding. Keep in mind these are listed in no particular order, TheArtCareerProject.com has no interest in ranking which artists deserve your generosity more.

1. VenusOverWater

Venus Unsuccess

From her New York City apartment, this designer has been making dresses, skirts, and pants meant that combine her Ghanaian heritage with her current life as a resident of New York City. It is hard not to be impressed with the bright and vibrant colors, the detailed and intricate patterns, and the chic designs that make the dresses not just colorful works of art but also stylish and fashionable outfits to wear out at formal and informal gatherings alike.

The proof is in the pudding and as she tells it, she has quickly found the demand for her work has rapidly exceeded what she can supply as her own manufacturer, which is why she has turned to Kickstarter. She has already done the majority of the leg work  by picking the Ghanaian shop where she will get her fabrics from, collaborating with an accessory designer to top off the collection, and using a number of different forms of media to promote and showcase her work, now she just needs to pay her manufacturer.

We have a soft spot for artists of all kind with bold visions and the courage to act on that vision, and that spot is even softer when the artist has apparent talent skill. So even if you don’t plan on buying one of the dresses that she manufactures, give some thought to contributing to her cause, because there can really never be enough talented fashion designers in the market, especially ones that are this unique and skilled.

Twitter: @venusoverwater

Facebook: www.facebook.com/VenusOverWater

2. Salt Lake Film Society’s Digital Projector Conversion

SLFS Success

Since opening in 2001, the Salt Lake Film Society has used film and cinema to not only educate the public, but also help showcase film talent and obviously highlight films and filmmakers that may not have the publicity machines or big budgets of Hollywood. The society’s programs and two theatres have showcased plenty of talented films and filmmakers that may not have otherwise received the attention they deserve, and the non-profit has done this all for the larger Salt Lake City community.

But film distributors are switching to digital technology to save money and filmmakers are able to improve many aspects of the performances, but right now the theatres of the Salt Lake City Film Society aren’t prepared for the onslaught of digital technology, and if they don’t find the money to convert their screens, the theatres will have trouble staying open. They are asking for money to help fund the conversion and they aren’t exactly sitting on their hands in the meantime as they are searching furiously for alternate revenue streams as well.

Film and cinema should not be exclusive to only those with deeply lined pockets and already famous and popular filmmakers. The Salt Lake City Film Society already knows this, it’s why they exist in the first place.The society isn’t trying to make money, it is just trying to help the community appreciate the cinema, so don’t be afraid to show your support by donating a few dollars and making sure that there is still the diversity in cinema that both filmmakers and film aficionados deserve.

Twitter: @saltlakefilmsoc

Facebook: www.facebook.com/SaltLakeFilmSociety

 3. Brooksher Ballet’s The Nutcracker 

Brooksher Unsuccess

UPDATE: Next round of funding has begun till Friday, Oct 25.

If you are a fan of ballet, then you don’t need to be told what The Nutcracker is. But if you are a true fan of ballet and might be visiting Arizona in December, you may want to check out Brooksher Ballet’s completely original production of the famous two-act ballet — that is if the local studio can find funding for its ambitious plan, and that is where you come in. Joshua and Natasha Brooksher are dance teachers with an excellent reputation and their own studio in Mesa, Arizona, but alone, they cannot possibly hope to produce such an elaborate and complex ballet, especially one with so many moving parts.

They won’t just be putting on the same old show that you and your parents have seen before however, they are planning a unique version of The Nutcracker with original choreography, sets, and costumes, all of which of course require an upfront investment before they can even think of planning the performance.   We see three main areas of challenge in producing our original Nutcracker. Maybe if this were just another large studio or production company looking for help financing their annual production of The Nutcracker, we would be less inclined to sing their praises.

But this is a local dance studio who understands that The Nutcracker isn’t a production that can or should be done on a small budget. They are trying to put on a special performance for the local community with the help and cooperation of some of the other well-known dance studios in the area, and they are refusing to let money stand in the way of their vision of what The Nutcracker should look like. For that reason, we commend them and highlight their project this month.

Twitter: @brooksherballet

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/BrooksherBallet

4.  Dodecado by Ledamp Industries

Maybe you haven’t ever thought that you needed a self-designed light sculpture, but that doesn’t mean it wouldn’t be a cool thing to have. The Dodecado is an illuminated dodecahedron with magnetic properties that allow you to basically create and shape your own light sculpture. The  creation is large enough and bright enough to light up any space you wish, but it is also small enough and flexible that you can move it around easily if you don’t like its initial placement.  The LED component of the light is eco-friendly and its different from other LED lamps as the rechargeable unit can actually be used as a portable light source itself. Not only are we all for innovative designs that also serve a purpose, but we are also all for innovative lights that are eco-friendly, easy to use, and easy to bring with you.

Twitter: @do_deca_do

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/dodecado

5. CITYWIDE

CITYWIDE Success

In November 2013, more than 25 artist-run entities will create collaborative exhibitions and projects all across Philadelphia. The idea is to create a month-long celebration of contemporary art in the City of Brotherly Love. It won’t just be art installations though. There will also be performances, panel discussions and many galleries to look at.

However, in order to put on a successful and elaborate art celebration, funding is necessary for things like an exhibition catalogue, shuttle services to make sure everyone can appreciate the diverse and unique art exhibits throughout the city, and match their grant funding. If you can’t get behind the type of undertaking that will showcase some of the country’s best contemporary art in one place, then we don’t know what you are even doing on this website.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Citywide-A-Collective-Exhibition/101352523398630