The Art of Fundraising
Once upon a time, fundraising was difficult, a little “same-old” and limited in the ways you could successfully ask for money. High-dollar goals might have been achieved by auctioning donated goods or elegant dinners with pricey plates or tables. Smaller dollar amounts meant bake sales, car washes and door-to-door soliciting. I have plenty of memories that include blisters and sunburns.
Today there are a myriad of ways to fundraise — GoFundMe, donations on Facebook, restaurants and other businesses that donate a percentage of sales on a given day. How about candy bars, candles, cookies, wrapping paper and popcorn tins our children’s schools or sports teams guilt us into purchasing with only the tiniest percentage of proceeds making it back to the cause.
My favorite fundraisers are ones that ask for participation, socialization and creation — art studio fundraisers. All ages can participate, truly making it a family giving event. And it just feels good! You combine raising money for a worthy cause with the creation of your own personal art piece. It’s a double whammy of feeling good: you let your creative self free while benefiting others, too.
Making art any kind of art reduces stress and can alleviate depression and anxiety. The benefits are both physical and emotional. So whether it's painting, doing needlework like knitting or crocheting, coloring or keeping an art journal, you’re helping yourself. Do art at a fundraising event and now you’re helping others, too.
What if you don’t think you’re “artistic?” That’s the best part, you don’t have to be. Many of today’s most soothing artforms require no artistic talent — magic can happen merely with a desire to try. You can learn to paint a canvas step-by-step with detailed instructions along the way (and a glass of wine, too). Bring a ceramic item to life with stencils, stamps and pre-drawn designs. Create an inspiration board using magazine clippings, stickers and lots of glue.
There truly is something for everyone at every skill level. You just need to know where to look.
Plan your art fundraiser
Several Brevard County businesses offer art fundraising, where it’s easy to play up the fun factor in raising funds.
- Art Tango, Merritt Island: Mobile art studio that offers sip-and-paint events, board art and mixed media fun at the location of your choice for both small- and large-scale events. arttangocafe.com
- ClayZ Arts, Rockledge: Multiple on- or off-site fundraising options including pottery, canvas or glass painting for both small and large-scale events. clayzarts.com/fundraising
- Get Fired Up, Melbourne: Group discounts and events for nonprofits. getfireduppottery.com
- Mimi’s Crafts, Satellite Beach: Offers nonprofits 20% of pre-tax sales on pottery, glass, canvas and more. Mimiscrafts.com
- Outlaw Pottery, Cocoa: Empty Bowls Project donations to help feed the homeless through multiple organizations. Contact Rosalie at outlawpottery.com.
- Painted with a Twist (PWAT), Cocoa and Melbourne: Proceeds from monthly “Painting with A Purpose” fundraisers benefit designated nonprofits. paintingwithatwist.com
Laurie Knisley, known as the ClayZ Lady, encourages young and old alike to get their art on. Whether it's pottery, painting, crafts, mixed media, journaling or needlework, she believes that art is the cheapest therapy available and the most fun. Laurie owns ClayZ Arts in Rockledge. She can be reached at 321-453-4848, GoCrazy@Clay-Z.com and ClayZArts.com.
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