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The Creative Issue – News for Creatives | November 12, 2019

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The Possibilities Of Crowdfunding

Kristie Yates

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There are some harsh facts that I’ve recently learned about the world: I will always drop toast butter side down, Hogwarts doesn’t exist and none of my Facebook friends actually remember my birthday. However the most painful and practical truth I’ve learnt as an Arts student is that creative projects cost money. Equipment, software, materials, locations, workspaces, cast and crew, marketing, distribution and even time all have to be taken into account.

There have always been ways to fund creative projects such as grants and loans but over the years the concept of crowdfunding has been gaining momentum, and for good reason.

Crowdfunding is when a creative group or individual pitches a project idea online to generate interest and encourage people to donate various amounts of money towards creating the project. It’s essentially a form of fundraising where the project creator offers small rewards to contributors but generally gains revenue and support based on the project itself.

Whether you are an aspiring photographer, filmmaker, artist, writer, performer, designer, gamer, musician or app developer, crowdfunding offers an option beyond ‘traditional’ channels of funding through dealing with fans, peers and like-minded strangers and retaining full project ownership at the end of the process.

One project that demonstrates the potential success of crowdfunding is the new Australian online film series, Wastelander Panda, a unique and beautifully captured western, sci-fi, drama series that tells the tale of the last remaining panda in a post-apocalyptic Wasteland.

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From humble beginnings, the mock university project became a full-scale production when writer and director Victoria Cocks and co-creator Marcus McKenzie filmed a prologue with the hopes of raising money through the popular Australian crowdfunding platform, Pozible.com.

With a target of $25, 000, the team went on to raise $25 225 from 353 supporters, a record for a film project on Pozible at that time. Wastelander Panda received further funding by the South Australian Film Corporation making it the first project in Australia to be funded by a government film agency without a traditional market attachment such as a broadcaster or distributor.

It seems as though every cent had been well spent as the first episode of Wastelander Panda was only uploaded to Youtube on May 27 and has since rapidly received almost 7000 views in 4 days along with optimistic reviews.

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While crowdfunding may not be suited for every project or creative team, it has certainly paid off for productions such as Wastelander Panda, which can only be seen as a positive testament towards the Australian film industry. It is extremely encouraging to know that original and insightful projects like this exist, in addition the crowdfunding options that bring them closer to reality for artist-kind.

Watch Wastelander Panda here: http://wastelanderpanda.com/map/