A new Kickstarter Gold Standard: Celebrating repeat creators
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Last month, over sixty of the most inventive creators in Kickstarter history returned to the platform for a special initiative called Kickstarter Gold. These artists, designers, musicians, filmmakers, and makers were invited by Kickstarter's Outreach and Curation teams to launch new projects putting fresh spins on their most celebrated works.
From 3Doodler to Goodnight Stories for Rebel Girls, Music for Cats to Chineasy, Kickstarter Gold projects had a remarkable success rate of 92%, garnering nearly $4.4 million in support from backers.
With a third of all pledges to successful Kickstarter projects going to repeat creators — over $1 billion since 2009 — we're thrilled, today and always, to celebrate the ways creators sustain their creative independence, and to see their supporters sticking by them time and again, becoming an integral part of the creative process.
And now — some highlights from this month-long golden sprint.
1. There’s a new publishing milestone and most-funded project.
Goodnight Stories for Rebel Girls 2, an inspiring collection of reinvented fairytales centering on great women from around the world, broke the previous record for most-funded Publishing project on Kickstarter, raising $866,193 from over 15,000 backers. (Side note: it was also the most-funded project in Kickstarter Gold.) The original Goodnight Stories for Rebel Girls was the previous record holder in Publishing, raising $675,614 from 13,454 backers; it's now spent five weeks on a New York Times list of best-selling children's books.
2. Margaret Atwood tweeted about a geek comic.
The Secret Loves of Geek Girls: Redux! brought together even more true stories of love, sex, and dating from the worlds of fandom. The collection of stories, poems, and prose — by comic creators, sci-fi writers, video game designers, cosplayers, and fans who contributed to the first edition of the anthology — has already touched the hearts of people the world over... including author (and Secret Loves contributor) Margaret Atwood.
3. Projects from the LGBTQ community brought a diverse range of stories to Kickstarter Gold.
* Hello Mr. magazine launched a residency called "The Issues" that will provide mentorship and resources for new ideas in queer publishing.
* Brooklyn-based dance troupe Ballez ran a second campaign to raise funds for instructional videos so that anyone, anywhere can celebrate the virtuosity, nobility, and beauty of their queered ballet technique.
* The Happily Ever Aftr graphic novel centers around a kidnapped Princess, a captor, and finding your place in the world as your discover your own sexuality.
* The Big Book of Bisexual Trials & Errors is a graphic memoir from artist Elizabeth Beier about dating women after breaking up with a long-term boyfriend.
4. People in every U.S. state will be reminded how beautiful they are.
Chicago-based artist Matthew Hoffman’s “You Are Beautiful” stickers began circulating in 2002. Soon they caught the eyes of locals in the Windy City, and the project grew to include public art installations. Through the support of Kickstarter Gold backers, Hoffman’s empowering statement will greet folks in all fifty U.S. states soon.
5. Creators are working to empower another generation of children to learn, create, and use their imaginations.
After raising $1.59 million in 2013 and becoming one of the most-funded ed-tech inventions in Kickstarter’s history, Primo Toys returned to bring their beloved Cubetto on new coding adventures. Chineasy, the popular learning tool aimed at making it easier to learn Chinese, came back with a tile game to help aspiring language-learners memorize Chinese characters through clever art.
3Doodler, which brought the power of 3D printing to the palm of your hand, created a limited Star Trek edition of their 3D-printing pens. The Kickstarter-exclusive Crew Pen Sets for The Original Series and The Next Generation are a creative treat, whether you’re a Trekkie or not.
And Vlad Dragusin of Candylab Toys created a special set of stylish and colorful wooden toy cars to celebrate their fourth “Kickstarter birthday” — four years of making beautiful toys, for and with their community.
6. Even Kickstarter staff joined in.
One of Gold’s most-backed projects, the single-station Public Radio (made out of Mason jars), was co-created by Kickstarter's Design & Technology Outreach Lead, Zach Dunham. Fun fact: after the original Public Radio project in 2014, many of the radios were hand assembled in the kitchen at Kickstarter HQ by Zach and friends over pizza.
7. The magic number is three.
After using Kickstarter for his series Meanwhile and raising over $395,000 for feature Ned Rifle, indie filmmaker Hal Hartley came back to Kickstarter for a third time to rally his fans around a limited-edition Henry Fool trilogy boxed set (newly remastered and subtitled in five languages), complete with his own soon-to-be-released music CD, After the Catastrophe.
Want to learn more about these inspiring creators? Read these profiles of Kickstarter Gold creators.
Inspired to run a project of your own? Get started.