Bonsai, planners, paintings, revisioning: YAC’s 2024 community supported artists
Published 1:53 pm Monday, January 29, 2024
The Yoknapatawpha Arts Council strives to challenge “creative entrepreneurs to imagine how to apply their work in new ways to create ongoing revenue.”
That challenge is part of the economic development work YAC coordinates with the Chamber of Commerce and Economic Development Foundation, supported by a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts.
“Artists are entrepreneurs as they create, sell, distribute and manage their own finances,” shared Meghan Gallagher, who manages the program for the council.
Email newsletter signup
The Arts Council’s Community Supported Artist Program assists creatives in finding opportunities based on the work created. This year four local creatives will be launching new phases of work to start businesses.
The featured artists and projects were announced at the Jan. 28 annual CSA Kick Off Party.
Zach Adamz, who has studied bonsai for over a dozen years, is the owner and executive artist at Komorebi Bonsai. He has traveled all around the world and has become a qualified bonsai master before making Oxford his home.
Last year he established the Magnolia State Bonsai Club (MSBC) and began teaching beginner bonsai courses.
Adamz is launching an online classroom to teach bonsai techniques and create an archive of education lessons. Working with local filmmakers, he is mastering how to film, edit and photograph his process so his classes can be accessible to bonsai enthusiasts around the world.
Charlesa Peters, owner of The Evolve Brand, started her journey in April 2023 while job searching. She had an idea to create a planner, but not just any planner – a self care planner.
Leveraging her graphic design degree from the University of Mississippi, she creates custom planners for all users, each with specific needs. She offers consultation services and designs a planner to help people reach goals from being more organized, creating time for self care or assisting in breaking down large life goals into daily tasks.
Molly Chain, creator of Molly Chain Collectiv started in 2020, turned her creative paintings into a unique wedding stationery business. She turned her paintings into custom art and emblems tailored to each individual client and their needs.
The goal for Chain is to offer unique and fun artwork that is geared towards her clients marking special occasions.
Jana Wilson, is an artist who creates art from broken or discarded items and assembles them in unique ways to tell a visual story. She has a vintage and nostalgic style of creating, receiving her first solo show in 2017.
Jana-themed assemblages offer an opportunity to create merchandise based on her images. Wilson will be working with photographers and merchandise companies to take her one-of-a kind creations and transform them into gift items.
“Our goal is simple with this program,” added Gallagher. “It is to showcase how creative ideas can be the starting point of a business. By inspiring creative people to take a small step in the work they are already creating and producing, we hope to teach the skills that will launch the next big idea.”
The local creatives receive seed funds to launch their projects and raise funds by “selling” shares to help them reach their goal.
To explore the projects, learn about the idea from local creatives and “invest” in these local startups, visit oxfordarts.com.