I have recently run across a few Kickstarter appeals, folks want financial help to publish their photobooks. That is, they want the production costs to be fully committed so they can print their book. Of course, I have no way of knowing whether, if their Kickstarter fails, they will print their book anyway. Probably some will and some won't.
Now, I have nothing against Kickstarter, or those who choose to use it. But what ever happened to good-old commitment, to doing something without having it fully funded? What ever happened to saying to yourself, "This is important to me and, money or not, I'm going to make it happen?".
Here at STRAYLIGHT we do things a bit differently. We commit to publishing a book and then hope that it will sell enough for our commitment to pay off. And, once it does, the profits are split between STRAYLIGHT and the photographer. Let me tell you, it sure feels good to send a photographer a cheque.
Come the new year, though, we're going to try something new. Kind of like a Kickstarter, in that there will be a concerted campaign to raise money for a fairly substantial project. Yes, it's my project: OFFICIAL OTTAWA. And, yes, if you contribute you will receive a prize.
But here's the rub . . . we're not going to ask you for money so that we can publish this project and send you the finished product (although, if you do contribute you will get the finished product), because we're going to publish this work, no matter what. No, we're going to be asking for money so that folks who didn't contribute will get the finished product. Kind of like paying it forward.
The idea is to cover the costs of the publication, then print a whole bunch of said publication and either give them away or sell 'em for, like, next to nothing.
We're still in the thinking-this-out phase of this craaazy idea, there are bound to be unforeseen wrinkles. But what else is new? If you're interested in this idea, stay tuned, more after the holidays.
And here's hoping there is some happy in your holidays.
The STRAYLIGHT catalogue so far . . .