These are wonderful, well articulated thoughts.
And HELL YES to not letting the middleman vampires suck it all out before she sees any of it!
dang, you read fast. i think i wasn't finished hitting "post" yet.
record companies, while they put money into a project, bill the artist for doing it. courtney love has a good essay on it somewhere.
well stated sir.
I think what a lot of people fail to comprehend is that this money is not being collected to make her bank account swell.
Anyone who has ever done a Kickstarter project, or known someone who has, or has even contributed to one that did well over the goal, knows that even if you go "way over" your intended goal, there are ALWAYS unforeseen expenses that'll push you beyond that. Be they travel, food, postage, packaging supplies, or whatever. All these things add up. And they add up fast.
Yeah, that's an amazing amount of money. And the return for that money is going to be equally amazing, and a LOT of work.
Personally, I'm really pleased for her.
And as another self-representing artist who is crowd-funding my next book, I say "hurrah" to anyone and everyone who is stepping up to prove that crowd-funding works. It's working for me.
I believe I remember reading in an email that she felt she'd need about $350-$400k all told, so this simply sounds to me like a fully funded project, with enough left over so that the whole team gets paid and no one has to sweat the next 12 months. I think that people forget (or don't know) that the way we all work in the indy art world is for love; sometimes we get paid very little, sometimes, when a project has the money, we get paid what we're worth. The idea is for it to all even out, and to spend our lives doing what we really enjoy.
I'm sad you had to say this; people are really self-absorbed and I think incredibly entitled to be so upset about the cost of that award. Art isn't always cheap, and it should be that way - the creators are entitled to be paid whatever the market will bear. If I had the $ I'd be buying the book; as it is I'm thrilled that the $1 digital copy is an option - I'm poor.
This is what I came to say, as well.
One thing that a lot of folk seem to have forgotten: Kickstarter and Amazon between them take 10% off the top, before Amanda gets to spend a single dime of that...
So they've collected upwards of $50k for the marginal cost of a bit of bandwidth.
I'm personally wondering about getting some friends & acquaintances together to raise enough dosh for a personal party down here in Wellington.nz...
Lol, I thought about doing it in Oz :)
I applaud this post. The idea that an artist should ALWAYS BE STARVING OMG, or they are selling out, not legit, pick your term, annoys me to no end.
Hell yes, she works her ass off. I went to the "Evening with..." her and Neil, and it is the most amazing thing I have ever seen in 45 years of life. The rapport between audience and artists was like nothing I had ever seen. Ever.
If I had 1,000 bucks, you bet your bum I'd buy that book. Why should artists not be paid for their work? And as you point out, you can still download the album for a buck. Everyone wins!
These people donated because they wanted to. Because they adore her. WHY IS THIS WRONG?
Screw the bitchy, jealous, bastards. Yeah. I feel that strongly about it. I'd rather see it go to her, than a damned corporate label, too.
Forgot to mention, it's not even as if she gets to just roll around in all this money. The product she is producing, costs money. And she is changing the face of art, media...everything!!
(Btw, this is S. Roit. I have returned.)
Edited at 2012-05-04 05:33 am (UTC)
I, quite sincerely, absolutely love you, Kyle.
Between you and Scalzi, this is the best rebuttal to folks being intolerant about what art should cost. You give me hope. I just had a campaign fail a couple days ago because folks didn't connect that sometimes art costs money to put in a gallery. And that's okay. I loved making the art. The show would have been a lovely thing to do. It didn't happen. Sometimes it works out like that.
Seeing Amanda soar? Makes me get back up on my feet and dust my ass off. Because it takes time and effort and commitment and she has worked her ass off.
I wish I had $1000. I would kill to own that book.
Bless you. You keep me moving forward too.
*blows you a kiss*
2012-05-04 05:39 am (UTC)
Art is a singular, fragile, and special relationship between the viewer and the piece. Its worth the investment if one can afford it, and will bring joy and feeling for generations.
There is so much amazing art out there, at prices anyone can afford. We need to find the right relationships for our resources and rejoice in them.
It was kind of you to address your detractors, but anyone who cannot understand, won't get it anyway.
All of the above.</p>
Don't want to spend $1000 on a book? Don't.
Seriously, screw em. Do I have art worth over $1000? Yes, actually I do. But I only could afford $25 at the moment, so that's what I backed Amanda for. If I had $1000, I'd be there with bells on and show ALL my friends.
Good on you for standing up for artists.
I just wanted you to know that I think this response is incredibly well put together and chock full of salient points. I wholeheartedly agree with everything you have written here.
I will also confess that when I read that one of the kickstarter rewards was a book by you and Mr Gaiman my heart skipped a little beat, and then I read it was $1000, and my heart sank a little. Not because I don't think it's worth it - trust me, if I had a spare $1000 I would have been one of the first signing up for it - no, my heart sank because I don't have a spare $1000. I will be getting Amanda's new album for $1 though, thanks in no small part to the people who are fortunate enough to get the book by Mr Gaiman and yourself. So, to those wealthy fortunate people, and to yourself, Mr Gaiman, and Amanda Fucking Palmer, I am very grateful!
Finally, in support of your 12th point, my absolute favorite piece of art that I own is a delicate and almost ethereal watercolour and ink painting... it's an original, not very big - only about 5 inches by 8 inches... it's painted on a piece of cardboard cut from a discarded box, and cost the princely sum of $10. It could have cost 50 cents, as the artist was asking for "worth donations" ... she was one of a collective of young displaced people who made a variety of artworks and craft goods using mostly things the rest of the world throws away, and selling them from blankets on the footpath, nothing had a price other than what someone was willing to pay for it. I had only $10 on me, so that's what I paid, if I'd had $100 I would have given her that. I framed it and hung it on my wall where it has been for the last 6 years, and everyone who is new to my home comments on how lovely it is, and I get to tell them the story, and I love it :)
So anyhow, sorry for long-windedness... Pffffft to the cranky emailers, and a big fat HUZZAH to you, Neil Gaiman and Amanda Palmer!
Some people (not you) need a reality check. A small business owner who continues to operate as a small business can't be a sell-out. That's... that's the whole idea of selling out. And that's what an independent musician IS: a small business owner.
Anyway, really, well-put. #12
seems to me to be the crux of the thing. It delineates precisely between those who determine their own personal sense of value and those who look to others for one. And it is the former that makes up the part of the world that I want around me.
Haters gonna hate, man. It's hard not to hate them back.Edited at 2012-05-04 06:12 am (UTC)
did you ever wanna buy someone you love something but you couldn't afford it? And you went and bought it anyway? raphael saadiq
I really don't get the "controversy" here. It's not even, as you say, that if you don't want to spend 1K on a book you don't have to, or that Kickstarter provides tangible rewards--though both are true. It's that the money is being raised to produce an album, and if more money gets raised, well, great--people want to invest in Amanda.
People who invest 1K or more get a thank-you in the form of a book, because hey, that's a lot of money they're putting in! It's worth a thanks! Everyone else doesn't automatically deserve the same thank-you just because they want it.
Maybe Amanda wrote a special song for Neil on his birthday. Maybe I hear that song and decide I really want a song from Amanda on my birthday too. But I'm not her husband, so I don't get one. That's how it is. Maybe I'd really like to be her husband and get a song, but nope, that's not how life worked out.
And I didn't give her a 1K and I don't happen get the book as a thank-you. Even if I really want it, and if I'd have liked to be rich enough to be able to give her the thousand dollars. Again, that's how life worked out. She doesn't owe me a book just because she chose to reward some other people with one.
The whole debacle is absurd, honestly, but Kyle, hopefully your well articulated thoughts on the matter will quell the concern of the endlessly entitled public.