Let’s face it: Some Kickstarter projects are trickier to execute than others. If you want to bring a new piece of technology into the world, for example, you need to think about selecting components, pricing them, connecting with the right factory, and so on.
All of that is easier to figure out than it was just a few years ago, thanks in part to the paths blazed by Kickstarter-funded hardware creators. But we think it could be a lot easier. That’s why we’ve teamed up with two industry leaders in this area, Avnet and Dragon Innovation, to develop something new: Hardware Studio.
We love it when people use Kickstarter to make creative tools — devices, kits, and platforms that open up new possibilities for makers, artists, and anyone looking to bring their ideas to life. So for this year’s Maker Faire in San Mateo, California, we invited a few of our favorite creators to showcase their creativity-enabling inventions alongside some of the remarkable things people have made with them.
These projects cover a wide range of creative pursuits, from drawing on paper to building circuits (or doing both simultaneously), beginner-friendly weekend projects to powerful tools for prototyping. With more than 100 Kickstarter-funded projects on display across Maker Faire, we’re sure you’ll find something that sparks an idea for your next project. Maybe you’ll even feel inspired to share that project on Kickstarter!
Thousands of artists and arts organizations have used Kickstarter to connect with a global community and create some incredible projects, from major museum exhibitions to bold public art installations and collectible limited editions. Today we're pleased to announce that there have been over 10,000 successfully funded projects in the Art category. Here are a few numbers behind that milestone:
As part of Kickstarter's mission to help bring creative projects to life, we're always looking for ways to help artists and creators find the support and resources they need to make their ideas a reality. Today we're happy to announce a new pilot program that aims to do just that — the Kickstarter Creators-in-Residence program.
Kickstarter launched eight years ago today — April 28, 2009. Each birthday I’m reminded of our winding path to existence.
Roughly eight years before Kickstarter’s launch — 16 years ago — our founder Perry Chen first had the idea. For eight long years, Perry worked at bringing this idea to life. Along the way he met co-founders in Charles Adler and me. Through years of determination and effort, Kickstarter was born.
Our 2009 launch is now the midpoint in our history. Since, nearly 125,000 creative projects have been successfully funded and more than $3 billion has been pledged to independent artists and creators. The $3 billionth dollar was pledged just this week! Kickstarter continues to astound us.
Here are some things we were proud to bring to life during the past year in service to the community of creators who call Kickstarter home.
The Creative Independent
Two years ago we reincorporated Kickstarter as a Public Benefit Corporation. In our Charter, we committed to create resources that help people bring their creative projects to life, and that connect people around the creative process. Last year we created The Creative Independent to do that.
The Creative Independent is a resource of emotional and strategic advice for artists from other artists. Each day it publishes a new interview or essay exploring a different area of the creative process. Our goal is to only publish information that could be useful to others for their creative practice, or as inspiration for more creative thinking. The Creative Independent has no advertising. It is intended as a resource.
We’re immensely proud to use our voice to share generous insights from artists about the craft of creating. Some great places to start include Henry Rollins’ inspirational push-up regiment, Anohni’s challenging thoughts on commercialization, Cynthia Daignault on not commodifying your art, and Nikki Giovanni on trusting your own voice.
Kickstarter Live Creators are sharing the creative process and early stage ideas in a new way with Kickstarter Live, launched last year. Through Live, backers are also getting to know the creators they’re supporting personally. It has been a positive space for community building and knowledge sharing.
Nearly half a million people have tuned in to watch creators share intimate musical performances, live product demos, gameplay tutorials, dance rehearsals, and more. The success rate for creators who engage with their communities on Live is more than twice the site-wide average (75% successful). Check out upcoming streams here.
New Communities Backers come from more than 220 countries and territories. Hello to all of you, around the world!
For creators, Kickstarter is available in twenty countries. Last year we opened up in Hong Kong, Singapore, and Mexico. More than 1,000 creators have shared new creative projects from those regions. Welcome!
We also opened our first international office in Vancouver, Canada, this year. We’re hiring, if you or someone you know is in Vancouver and would love to work at Kickstarter.
Our community continues to impress with their accomplishments. Here’s a small sampling of what they achieved in the past year:
The Design Museum in London unveiled a new exhibition celebrating Kickstarter design projects;
Every five seconds someone backs a Kickstarter project. More than 12.7 million people around the world have taken a chance on new creative ideas here, pushing 123,587 of them one step closer to reality. All this just added up to an exciting milestone — as of last night, $3 billion has been pledged to independent creators on Kickstarter. It’s a big figure, but stepping back, what it represents is much bigger.
By design, Kickstarter offers creators the freedom to take risks and realize their creative vision. And it offers backers the chance to be part of a community that’s passionate about bringing new creative ideas to life. Together they’re pushing creative culture in new and ambitious directions. As we reflect on how artists, creators, and innovators have raised billions of dollars in support of creative ideas at the earliest stages of development, here are three trend lines that stand out and trace those shifts.
Music is core to Kickstarter’s DNA. In fact, it’s how we got our start. In late 2001, Kickstarter Creator and Chairman, Perry Chen, was living in New Orleans when he had an idea to bring a pair of DJs down for show during Jazz Fest. He found a great venue and reached out to their management, but since he didn’t have the required funds the show never happened. That led him to imagine a way for audiences to pledge support for creative projects at their earliest stages. Eight years later Kickstarter launched as way to do just that.
Today, we’re celebrating a milestone that reminds us of our musical roots — 25,000 successfully funded music projects. The 22,702 independent creators behind those 25,000 projects have recorded albums, funded tours, founded labels, premiered documentaries about iconic musicians, created new instruments, and beyond. Two million people from around the world have supported those artists to the tune of $175 million.