Following on from a highly successful pilot program, the 2022 Helpmann Academy Creative Innovator Program will provide the entrepreneurial businesses with the support, skills, funding and networks to launch their creative endeavour.
Over eight months, 13 participants across nine different projects/businesses will be provided with $2000 in seed funding, matched one-on-one mentoring from an established arts practitioner, access to workshops and masterclasses delivered by leading business professionals, contact with a pool of industry experts and business advisors, access to a co-working workspace, and networking and pitching opportunities. The program then culminates in an event where the recipients of the major seed funding are announced.
In 2021, three creative entrepreneurial businesses shared in $45,000 in seed funding through the Creative Innovator pilot program.
Flinders University graduates Alexander Salkicevic and Bryce Kraehenbuehl received $20,000 in seed funding for their film production business, Two Up Films, after impressing the pitch panel with their innovative business model.
“We would say that as artists, this program might be the most useful opportunity we’ve ever been given to seriously look at our craft and work out how to make a sustainable living from it,” they said.
“Before the Creative Innovator Program, we thought our business idea was years away before being achieved. However, with all the amazing guidance we gained, it opened our eyes to all the creative avenues we can go down now that are attainable.”
In 2022, the creative business proposals cover a wide range of disciplines and innovative ideas – from a cross-functional equestrian brand to an arts-based skills and knowledge-sharing app.
Meet South Australia’s creative entrepreneurs of tomorrow:
WHAT: Brooke Bowering is one half of CSP Digital, an Adelaide based digital production company specialising in videography, photography, and creative content.
EXCITED ABOUT: “To learn how to run a sustainable business. To have a refined product pitch for a web series. The opportunity to connect with other incredible creatives.”
FOLLOW: Instagram – @cspdigitalau / Facebook – @cspdigitalau
WHAT: Tornow Equestrian is a cross-functional equestrian brand that marries art and science to create market-leading technical apparel products. It is headed up by Chloe Tornow, whose design philosophy is founded on user-centred design and environmental sustainability.
EXCITED ABOUT: “Product development, business mentoring and hopefully the funding to push my project to the next stage.”
FOLLOW: Instagram – @tornowequestrian / Facebook – @tornowequestrianofficial
WHAT: Headed up by Felicity Boyd, Motus Collective aims to facilitate connections between artists from diverse backgrounds and disciplines in a shared rigorous contemporary movement-based practice.
EXCITED ABOUT: “I’m hoping to build better business knowledge, meet other creative entrepreneurs, and gain insight into creative longevity.”
FOLLOW: Instagram – @tornowequestrian / Facebook – @motuscollective
Hannah Ranger Film
WHAT: Emily Eilers and Hannah Ranger are two emerging filmmakers looking to establish a film production company that focuses on documentaries about women-led stories, LGBTQ+ issues and disability rights; a company that promotes and celebrates diversity through media.
EXCITED ABOUT: “Developing our business literacy skills, utilising various distribution methods to reach our audience, and successfully navigating and networking in the SA film industry.”
FOLLOW: Instagram – @hannahrangerfilms
WHAT: Melissa Pullinger, Ren Williams, Aarod Vawser and Connor Reidy form the CRAM Collective, a new South Australian independent arts company with a focus on “cramming” a range of creatives and art forms together to create ground-breaking, brave, new work.
EXCITED ABOUT: “We hope to develop company strategies and long-term goals through the creation of a business plan; [to] meet and find like-minded creative collaborators and further the momentum we have created with CRAM, and add to our company values.”
FIND THEM: Instagram – @thecramcollective / Facebook – @thecramcollective
WHAT: Helmed by Olivia Kathigitis, Okay Kathigitis is a hand-made, sustainable, and ethical practice that works with silver, brass and semi-precious stones. Her jewellery draws upon human connection, fluid and natural forms, and the endless beauty of the Australian landscape.
EXCITED ABOUT: “Facilitating creative and business connections. Harnessing the trajectory that I have created for my business already. Creating a successful business model with a stable future plan.”
FIND THEM: Instagram – @okaykathigitis
WHAT: Baratto is an app that aims to connect artists based on the skills/knowledge they already have and the new ones they would like to build. Through connecting with other artists and sharing skills, Baratto aims to empower artists to grow their support system, build new skills with others, and grow together as artists.
EXCITED ABOUT: “Strengthening my ability to connect creativity, business, and technology acumen. To put together a well-rounded business plan to support the concept behind Buratto and build connections and relationships within the arts and tech industry.”
FIND THEM: Instagram – @sofia3dt
WHAT: Susie Althorp is an emerging ceramicist who is looking to translate her exhibition pieces into a polished line of customised porcelain lighting designs for domestic and commercial settings.
EXCITED ABOUT: “Launching a product line based on my current artistic practice in ceramic sculpture and installation which will provide long-term business sustainability. Product development with guidance on technical aspects of combining different mediums. Establishing new connections and collaborations in the design/creative industries.”
FIND THEM: Instagram – @susiejanealthorp
WHAT: Tim Wiffen is an emerging podcast producer, director, and editor who hopes to grow his production business, Whimsy Productions, which takes inspiration from NPR in America and ABC Radio National in Australia.
EXCITED ABOUT: “I aim to consistently articulate the problems I solve for my clientele in my branding… I would like to align my idea of podcasting into a market position that new clients seek and understand. I hope to match my technical skills with a comprehensive understanding of business practices.”
FIND THEM: Instagram – @whimsyproductions / Facebook – @WhimsyProductions
Stay tuned to the Helpmann Academy Facebook and Instagram (@helpmannacademy) pages to stay updated with the Creative Innovator Program participants as they make their way through the program.
The Helpmann Academy Creative Innovator Program is generously supported by a group of Helpmann’s philanthropic partners and donors, including the James and Diana Ramsay Foundation, the Langley Family Foundation, the Lang Foundation and Arts South Australia.
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