Artist Development

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The Business of the Arts (BOA) program gives local artists an opportunity to build their capacity to compete and thrive. With the right resources, they can flourish as entrepreneurs as well as artists, and create a sustainable living from their artistic practice.

Calling all artists and art groups! ACWB reviews the BOA learning series on an ongoing basis and we are looking for feedback from local artists on the current interests and needs of the arts community. Please fill out the survey to give us a better understanding of what you would like to see in the Business of the Arts program!

Creative Connections (C²) focuses on artistic practice, creative work and networking — by artists, for artists.

C² exists to help artists develop skills relevant to their discipline, feel more confident in their artistic practice and creative work, and connect with each other and leaders in their disciplines. ACWB will develop meaningful partnerships with local and visiting artists and arts organizations to present the program.

Calling all artists and art groups! Do you have an idea for a workshop, master class or event? ACWB wants to help you make it happen! We could provide a variety of resources to assist you in bringing your concept to life. Learn more about how ACWB can help with your arts initiative through our Creative Connections Process.

After completing the Post Wildfire Recovery in the Arts Strategic Plan (conducted by the Arts Recovery Working Group), ACWB gained funding from the Canadian Red Cross to manage a two-year arts recovery project. The goal of the project is to create opportunities for artists to collaborate and heal through their art, ultimately supporting recovery and resiliency in our community.

Learn more about the Art Recovery Project and Arts Recovery Working Group.

The ACWB Artist in Residency program follows the traditional residency model, in which non-local or local professional artists spend time creating work inspired by the environment, culture and people of Wood Buffalo. These Residency artists will engage with the community in a variety of ways, showcase their work through a final event and, most importantly, spend time mentoring a selected group of emerging, established and professional artists from this area. The program will be open to artists in any discipline.

There are so many benefits with this type of program, including bringing new perspectives, techniques and networking opportunities to our arts community, and giving non-local artists a new lens on the Wood Buffalo region.

In past years, the Municipally operated Residency program focused on master classes and mentorship. This type of artistic development is available through Arts Council Wood Buffalo’s Creative Connections program stream.

If you have questions or would like more information about our Artist in Residency program, please contact us at [email protected].

The Artrepreneur Series — Building Your Business

Do you practice art as a side-hustle? Are you looking to build your business skills, so you can be more independent as an artist?

Register today for “The Artrepreneur Series — Building Your Business,” a 6-week workshop series from April 29 – June 3, 2021.

About the Workshop Series

With the right resources, artists can flourish as entrepreneurs as well as artists, and create a sustainable living from their artistic practice. 

The Artrepreneur Series — Building Your Business gives artists an opportunity to build their capacity to compete and thrive through a 6-week “Building Your Business” workshop series, including topics such as “Pitching with Confidence,” “Understanding Cash Flow,” and “Creating a Business Plan.”

This series is co-hosted by Arts Council Wood Buffalo in partnership with Community Futures Wood Buffalo. Powered by Project Gazelle.

Workshop Details

  • When: Thursday evenings from April 29 – June 3
  • Time: 6 – 8 p.m.
  • Where: Zoom
  • Fee: $25 (plus administrative fees) — Those who attend 100% of the workshop series will receive a total refund and a certificate of completion.
    • That’s right! Get a refund for attending all six workshops.

Register through Eventbrite

Certificate of Completion 

Those who attend all six workshops will be given a Certificate of Completion.

Made available for pick-up from the Arts Council Wood Buffalo office located at Keyano College, or can be mailed, with shipping fees charged to you.

Who Can Participate?

Open to local artists in the Wood Buffalo region, as well as participants from across Alberta.

20 participants maximum – waitlist available through Eventbrite.

Registration Deadline

Registration closes at 6 p.m. on April 29.

Waitlisted participants will be notified by email if a space opens up, and will be given 24 hours to register before the opportunity is given to the next person on the list.

Workshop Dates & Descriptions

April 29 — Entrepreneurship? (6 – 8 p.m.)
Facilitated by: Glenys Reeves-Gibbs

This session will explore what it means to be an entrepreneur with a focus on the ten talent areas that successful entrepreneurs need to develop to be successful. We will explore some of the research behind these talents and discuss some ways to enhance the natural talents that entrepreneurs have. Following the session any participants who are interested in exploring their own personal talents will have the opportunity to do this through the completion of the Gallup Builder Profile 10 assessment.

May 6 — Side Hustle (p.1) (6 – 8 p.m.)
Facilitated by: Kelly Harris-Martin, CF Fawatinaw

Side Hustles are fun. Side hustles are distracting. It can be difficult to manage your full-time job and your side hustle at the same time. This workshop will take you through the ins and outs of what works, what doesn’t work, and important lessons to keep with you to consistently crush your full-time and side hustle duties.

May 13 — Side Hustle (p.2)  (6 – 8 p.m.)
Facilitated by: Kelly Harris-Martin, CF Fawatinaw

Description TBA

May 20 — Creating a Business Plan  (6 – 8 p.m.)
Facilitator: Michelle MacNeil

A goal without a plan is just a wish – Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

So, what’s the plan? A business plan is one of your best tools as an entrepreneur; it is vital to your business, and writing one is easier than you think it is! This session will walk you through the process of developing a business plan – a strategic roadmap towards your entrepreneurial goals. From concept and framework, to SWOT analysis and market research, it’s time to plan for your success.

May 27 — Understanding Cash Flow  (6 – 8 p.m.)
Facilitator: Corrine McGirr

Cash is Queen! Having a clear multi-year cash flow projection can help you and your business manage seasonality, slow times, and the busy times. It can help you prepare for big capital or inventory purchases, or to better manage inflow of revenues. Join us to learn the basics of cash flow and how to manage it effectively.

June 3 — Pitch with Confidence (6 – 8 p.m.)
Facilitator: Wendy Plandowski

Wow your funders, customers and followers with a POWERFUL Pitch. Every entrepreneur launching a new business, needs to have their “pitch” down pat. What to say and how to say it, how to position your unique offer, how to communicate your story, from start to scratch. This workshop will review the steps, delivery methods and provide you with the tools necessary to succeed and “pitch with confidence”.

What Makes this Series Special?

There are plenty of business workshops out there, but this series is targeted specifically to artists looking to grow as artrepreneurs. 

“Being good in business is the most fascinating kind of art. Making money is art, and working is art – and good business is the best art.” – Andy Warhol

Getting good at your art is one thing, but turning it into a business is a different adventure. Tie the two together, and take your art to your audience, make sales, get hired, and achieve a new level of success.

Bringing Entrepreneurs Together

This series is hosted in partnership with Community Futures Wood Buffalo, an organization dedicated to helping people just like you turn business ideas into reality. Their small business specialists connect entrepreneurs with the skills, financing, and resources needed to succeed.

This series is powered by Project Gazelle, who believes in the rainforest philosophy, where bringing entrepreneurs together creates opportunities for sharing and new ideas to emerge.

About Business of the Arts

ACWB’s Business of the Arts (BOA) program gives local artists an opportunity to build their capacity to compete and thrive. With the right resources, they can flourish as entrepreneurs as well as artists, and create a sustainable living from their artistic practice. 

April 29, 2021

Making it in Music Part 2: A Conversation with Modern Times Trio & Dan Gillies

In early February 2020, Arts Council hosted a two-part series for the Business of the Arts (BoA) program entitled Making it in Music. The first part featured a songwriting workshop with pianist and composer, Denis Nassar, held at The District Recording Studio; the second part was to be a jazz concert and conversation with professional Alberta jazz musicians Modern Times Trio and Dan Gillies.

Part 1 was a blast as Denis Nassar took songwriters through a number of tips and tricks for getting songs from imagination to reality. While we don’t have video of that adventure, you can now watch Part 2 on YouTube.

Unfortunately, the concert was cancelled, but we were able to record an in depth conversation with Modern Times Trio and local guitarist, Dan Gillies, on what it takes to be a professional – not only from an artistic perspective, but also with a focus on the music business.

Watch the Conversation on YouTube

Now you can watch the entire interview on YouTube, which was facilitated by ACWB newbie, Will Collins (Communications Coordinator), on his second day working for Arts Council.

Making it in Music panel discussion with Alberta musician Modern Times Trio hosted by Arts Council Wood Buffalo.

Modern Times Trio brings together three of Alberta’s most in-demand performing and recording artists: guitarist, Ryan Davidson; bassist, Mike Lent; and drummer, Thom Bennett. The group is inspired as much by film music, drum n’ bass, and contemporary sounds as it is by classic and modern jazz music. Their repertoire ranges from inventive originals to reimagined updates of classic material – including bands like Radiohead. Modern Times Trio’s music is fun, compelling, melodic, and accessible. Learn more about Modern Times Trio in this Business of the Arts blog post.

Local professional musician and instructor Dan Gillies also joined in the discussion about the music business to add a local perspective. Dan released his first instrumental album in 2014. The album featured styles ranging from classic rock to modal jazz to Celtic mandolin, and was hailed as a “brilliant fusion of styles.” Dan’s various groups have shared stages with The Trews, George Canyon, Bachman & Turner, The Road Hammers, and many others. Dan is also an author and regularly contributes to Canadian Musician Magazine.

August 25, 2020

Making it in Music: Concert & Conversation

February 11, 2020

Enjoy a live jazz performance followed by an insightful panel conversation on what it takes to be a musician in this day and age from leading Alberta musicians. Following Making it in Music Part 1: Songwriting Workshop with Denis Nassar, hosted by The District Recording Studio, ACWB hosts Making it in Music Part 2 with professional Alberta jazz musicians Modern Times Trio on February 11, 2020 as part of the Business of the Arts series. Held in Keyano Theatre & Arts Centre Rehearsal Hall, Modern Times Trio will perform an intimate concert, followed by a panel discussion sharing their insights as professional musicians. The panel also includes local musician Dan Gillies to give a local’s perspective on making it in music!

Register today at making-it-in-music.eventbrite.ca

Modern Times Trio brings together three of Alberta’s most in-demand performing and recording artists: guitarist Ryan Davidson, bassist Mike Lent and drummer Thom Bennett. The group is inspired as much by film music, drum n’ bass and contemporary sounds, as it is by classic and modern jazz music.  Their repertoire ranges from inventive originals to reimagined updates of classic material.   Modern Times Trio music is fun, compelling, melodic and accessible.

Members of the group have played together in various formations over the last 10 years and have developed a chemistry and a band sound that is instantly recognizable.  Members of the trio have performed with:  PJ Perry, Kathleen Edwards, Gord Bamford, Dave Brubeck, Wayne Newton, Brad Turner, Tommy Banks, Johnny Reid, K.D Lang, Jann Arden, and hundreds of others.

In addition to their vast performing experience Modern Times trio members have worked at the following post-secondary institutions: University of Alberta, MacEwan University, Concordia University, Alberta College, University of North Texas and Keyano College.  Members of the trio have also appeared on over 200 albums as performers, engineers, producers, song-writers and arrangers.

For this special performance and clinic, Modern Times Trio is joined by local musician and instructor Dan Gillies.  Dan is a Canadian guitarist who released his first instrumental album in 2014. The album featured styles ranging from classic rock to modal jazz to Celtic mandolin and was hailed as a “brilliant fusion of styes”. Dan’s groups have shared stages with The Trews, Geroge Canyon, Bachman & Turner, The Road Hammers and many others. Dan is also an author and regularly contributes to Canadian Musician Magazine.

February 11, 2020

Making it in Music: FACTOR Funding 101

ACWB and FACTOR invite musicians and recording artists on August 20 to a helpful grants webinar. Join FACTOR online to learn all about their funding opportunities that can finance recording, touring, music videos, and everything in between!

Facilitator: Karina Moldovan

FREE – registration required

https://www.eztalks.com/live/webinar_registration/webinar_id/986439051

The Business of the Arts program offers local artists an opportunity to build their capacity to compete and thrive by providing them with the resources they need to flourish as entrepreneurs as well as artists and to create a sustainable living from their artistic practice.

FACTOR (the Foundation Assisting Canadian Talent on Recordings) is a public/private partnership that supports the production of sound recordings by Canadian musicians and helps Canadian music companies make recordings available to a wider public.

August 20, 2019

Working Artist 101

ACWB invites artists, arts organizations, and community arts groups on July 9 to Keyano Theatre & Arts Centre for our next Business of the Arts workshop. Join ACWB for a crash course in building a solid foundation for your artistic enterprise – expect tips, tricks, and takeaways!

Topics for the Working Artist 101 workshop include:

– Administrative and financial basics
– Building your portfolio
– Pricing your work
– Promoting yourself

Facilitator: Diana Moser, ACWB Programs Manager
Registration is $20 for ACWB members and $25 for non-members, and is available through Eventbrite at: http://boa-workingartist101.eventbrite.ca.

The Business of the Arts program offers local artists an opportunity to build their capacity to compete and thrive by providing them with the resources they need to flourish as entrepreneurs as well as artists and to create a sustainable living from their artistic practice.

July 9, 2019

Canadian Art Support Organizations Meet & Greet

Arts Council Wood Buffalo invited Artists and arts enthusiasts to an evening of conversation in the Rehearsal Hall at Keyano Theatre & Arts Centre, with visitors to our region from Calgary Arts Development, Canadian Heritage, Canada Council for the Arts | Conseil des Arts du Canada, and more.

Featuring live musical performances, networking with local champions of Arts, Culture, and Heritage, as well as The Art of Healing visual and literary art exhibit in the Keyano exhibition space were all available to enjoy by guests.

In partnership with Keyano Theatre & Arts Centre, ACWB also hosted the Canada Council for the Arts for a free information session about their funding programs. The session provided an overview of grants available to artists working across artistic fields of practice. Several artists also met one on one with Canada Council program officers to discuss their needs in more detail.

April 30, 2019

Making It in Music – Alberta Music

March 18-21, 2019

ACWB hosted Albert Music for a three-day visit that featured three different opportunities for local musicians to connect with Alberta Music and learn about making it in music: a recorded interview, an Evening with Alberta Music information session, and drop-in sessions. Musicians learned about Alberta Music and the basics of the music industry in Canada such as grants, how to register songs with SOCAN, and information on conferences and festivals. Alberta Music also met with several musicians, promoters, and venues during their visit.

Thank you to Carly Klassen from Alberta Music for sharing your knowledge, and learning about our music community, and thank you to all the local musicians that came out!

March 18, 2019

Headshot and Artwork Photography

March 12, 17-18, 2019

Arts Council Wood Buffalo presented a new member-exclusive addition to the Business of the Arts program – headshot and artwork photography services!

Artist portfolios are vital to landing commissions, booking gigs, or selling work. These portfolios are often one of the only ways people can learn about who you are as an artist and what you have to offer. Put your best face forward with a professionally photographed headshot and if you’re a visual artist, showcase your pieces in high quality photographs that are almost as good as the real thing.

Photography services were provided by Crystal Mercredi of Life and Portraits. She is a local award winning photographer who is accredited by the Professional Photographers of Canada, recognized by The National Association for Professional Child Photographers and the Accredited Professional Newborn Photographers Internationale, as well as a proud ACWB member.

Each session cost $45.00 – ACWB heavily subsidized the photographer rate for these services. A regular studio session with Life and Portraits costs $299.99 – an 85% discount.

March 12, 2019

Highlights from past events

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