Here’s my latest invitation to co-create something wonderful. Please visit my Round 1 Join In For Joy GoFundMe campaign to launch an Art Deck! There’s a 2-minute video on the GoFundMe webpage, and an essay that I’ve repeated below. Thanks for considering this collaboration, and blessings to you! —Melanie
Join in for Joy: Launch an Art Deck
Whenever I sell my art prints at a conference or a festival, people say, “I wish I could buy so many more of them! It’s impossible to choose just one or two.” Whenever I make small-sized copies of my images to use in workshops or with my clients, people want to know whether they can take them home. And whenever I think of sharing my art more widely with the world, I dream of making a deck of art cards to play with and pray with.
I’ve talked about this art deck idea for years, and more earnestly for the last two. Last month at the Spiritual Directors’ International Conference, my friend Sarah C looked me in the eye and said, “It’s time. Make the deck.” When I told her I couldn’t afford to do it yet, her reply caught me off guard, but in the best way. “We all belong to each other,” she said. What if I were to risk letting myself belong to something bigger— to ask others to join me in a crowd-funding campaign, to let my art deck dream to belong to all of us?
For several reasons, asking is hard for me. I’d rather do all the homework myself, and just tell you about it when it’s all shining and ready for purchase.
But this is the moment when I actually need the most support— in the research, discernment, and development phase. I need quiet, concentrated time to listen for guidance and look for assistance, to explore the options and come to good decisions about the way forward. Since I’m a self-employed artist and spiritual director, those kind of hours are “unpaid” unless I find another way to fund them. As my friend Vicky said just last week, “Crowd-funding is the way art gets made now.” We all get to help the art, or the music, or the writing hatch and then fly. I know and love this when it comes to other artists… and now it’s my turn to open up yet again and risk us belonging to each other.
Are we ready? Here goes—
Hey, friends, I’m going to make a great deck of art cards, full of images I’ve received and created over 20 years of inspiration along my spiritual journey. It turns out this art encourages many others on their own paths of spiritual exploration. (I’m still so awed and glad about that— Every time!) And a lot of these people have been asking me to make the images more accessible. My guidance is clear that the next step is to make a deck of art cards (or two or three). Check out my 2-minute video to hear my voice and see the first deck prototype in action.
I want to offer pocket-sized card images of joy, challenge, love, and goodness. Would you like to help me? If it feels joyful and fun to you, will you consider giving toward launching this art deck project? I will so gratefully receive the gifts of your good wishes, encouragement, prayers, ideas, purchases of art from my website, and/or donations to this Go Fund Me campaign— whatever delights your heart to share. You’ll co-create something beautiful with me! Then we’ll let it loose, in our world that so deeply needs our offerings of beauty, truth, and compassion.
This Round 1 campaign will support me to:
–Discern how the deck/s take shape
–Name the deck/s
–Find a printing company
–Create the graphics for packaging
–Write and create an information booklet
–Plan and implement the Round 2 campaign
The bigger, wider Round 2 campaign will focus on production costs. In Round 2, donors can give in advance to receive their own art decks— and other festive incentives. I can hardly wait!
If Round 1 is successful, then I expect to launch Round 2 in the fall of this year and to deliver decks in the spring of 2017. How fun is that?!?
If Round 1 exceeds my goal, then I’ll use the extra support toward improving Round 2 with quality video software, a working creative retreat, and maybe even some business coaching to help me get the art out further into the world. That would be amazing.
Thank you so much for considering my invitation to “Join In For Joy”— collaborating with me to bring an art deck to life. I know there are many other important causes and projects we’re all supporting, so I’ll also be honored to receive your good thoughts and blessings for this work.
Let’s see what goodness unfolds!