Every week, we round up some of the stories about projects that made the press. We're happy to see them out there in the real world, and excited to share their progress with you! Read on.
Tad Hendrickson of The Wall Street Journal reported on the Jazz Gallery in New York City: "One of the great stories in jazz involves Sonny Rollins spending 1959-61 practicing on the Williamsburg Bridge, even after he'd released several classic albums. It seemed to be an exercise in myth building, but the reality was that Mr. Rollins's Lower East Side tenement apartment had thin walls. Fifty years later, jazz musicians still struggle to find places to play where they won't be bothered and won't bother others — and these days it's harder than ever. But help is on the way. A new $20,000 fund-raising campaign is allowing the nonprofit Jazz Gallery, the cultural center on Hudson Street devoted to nurturing young jazz musicians, to offer artists who have played there (or soon will) free use of its facilities for rehearsal, research and development."
Christopher Kelly of The New York Times followed the story of the Austin-based Zellner brothers, whose feature film project, Kid-Thing, premiered at Sundance this week: "Eager to make another feature, they turned their attention to the modestly scaled 'Kid-Thing.' They secured some financing for the project through Kickstarter, an online fund-raising system that has become popular among indie filmmakers, who post descriptions of their films in the hopes of soliciting donations. 'Kickstarter definitely has very quickly started playing a big part in independent films.'"
Stacy Nick of The Coloradoan wrote about local creatives Shane Miller, Johnny Hickman and Blake Neubert, who each discovered Kickstarter to fund a play, an album, and a creative arts mentoring program: "Shane Miller sold his car to finance his play. Early on, Johnny Hickman sold blood to make payments on his guitar. Blake Neubert worked as a face painter at carnivals to pay for canvases and paint. When it comes to their work, artists are willing to go to great lengths to finance their passions. 'No guts, no glory,' said Miller, who sold his Honda Civic Hybrid to back his 2007 rock opera 'Sinthesis.' Now, the Fort Collins playwright and actor hopes to raise $15,000 to present a new version of his play at the Boulder Fringe Festival. This time, however, he’s not completing grant applications, maxing out his credit card or hocking the family silver. He’s going to Kickstarter."
Jim Giles of Nature featured Cesar Harada's sailing robot project, Protei, noting: "Harada, an engineer, had been working on oil-spill mitigation at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge. But he quit the lab in frustration at what he saw as a slow pace of work and a focus on expensive solutions. He travelled south to join the clean-up operation for the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. Once there, his mind turned to a futuristic solution: a low-cost clean-up robot that local people could build and deploy themselves. Yet his two criteria for the project — a quick build and open-source intellectual property — all but ruled out academic or industrial funding. Harada turned to Kickstarter, a website used by authors, film-makers and artists in search of project funding."
Mohammad Al abdallah of International Journalists Network interviewed the creators behind the Speak Out Tunisia project: "A year after the Tunisian revolution, elections have taken place and dozens of new projects have emerged in the promising media landscape of this small country. Speak Out Tunisia is a citizen journalism training project that aims to teach a diverse group of Tunisian citizens about digital media and online journalism and return the power of a free and fair press to the Tunisian people. Currently seeking funding with online platform Kickstarter, Speak Out Tunisia will teach video and editing techniques, reporting and interviewing skills, audio recording and editing, photojournalism techniques and smartphone video, editing and live streaming applications, said Anne Medley, the lead instructor of the project."
Pete Brook of Wired's Raw File chronicled the roadblocks faced by Theron Humphrey on his journey to fulfill the promise of his This Wild Idea project: "On New Year’s Day in Jackson, Mississippi, traveling photographer Theron Humphrey returned to his parked Toyota pickup truck to find the cab window smashed. His camera gear, totaling over $6,000, was gone. A disheartening way to ring in the new year. While it’s never a good time to have one’s MacBook Pro, Canon 5D, Zeiss lens and iPad stolen, Humphrey was in the middle of a project that required him to post a photo every day to his website, where thousands of readers check in every month to follow his journey. “The saddest part is they took both of my external drives,” says Humphrey. “They had every single photograph that I’ve taken in the past five months.” Humphrey made a reward flyer for the city of Jackson. It was the mid-point of a 365-day,Kickstarter-fueled photo odyssey across America, called This Wild Idea. The project has Humphrey meeting one new person every day and telling his or her story through photos and a blog post."