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Local website shows off creative wares

Published: 
Saturday, July 22, 2017

Local website plentytalent.com was founded in 2014 based on the perceived need for a regional database of emerging talent in all areas of the creative industries.

Three years later, expansion plans are in the works through a crowdfunding campaign in association with the World Bank and Caribbean crowdfunding consulting company VisionFunder.

Co-founder Gavin Luke said the website was created using Unesco’s definition of creative industries.

It therefore features practitioners from the visual and performing arts, film, music, fashion and literature and stretches across the Caribbean from the British Virgin Islands to T&T.

He said that when the site began, the featured artists were people from T&T and the Caribbean that he and co-founder Andrew Proudfoot knew from their circles.

As it became more well known, artists also began to approach them to be featured on the site, but they still keep eyes and ears open for people with potential.

He said being featured on the site is free, and there are no plans to charge artists to be featured.

Luke said to be featured creatives should have at least one body of work, such as music, a film, a book, dance videos, paintings, etc.

“The template is we do a profile on them, speak about their achievements to date and we post completed work that they did.

“We feature one artist at a time to give people a chance to know them, and send out email and social media blasts to let people know about the featured artist.”

The site garners over 20,000 hits a month from the Caribbean and the diaspora, he said. He hopes the modifications to the site will draw more hits and more creatives.

Luke said the crowdfunding idea came about after seeing a call for Caribbean businesses to participate in a free Massive Online Open Course (MOOC), the flagship Crowdfunding MOOC for Caribbean Entrepreneurs (CMCE), funded by the World Bank.

Following the eight-week online course, Plenty Talent was one of two T&T businesses chosen to participate in a coaching programme to carry out their crowdfunding campaign, under a 90-day mentorship programme delivered by VisionFunder.

He said the campaign, which is scheduled to begin in early August, aims to raise US $6,000 to upgrade plentytalent.com.

There are four major modifications that will be carried out using the raised funds. The first will be to overhaul the site to make it more user-friendly and the second will be to develop the film page to make it more interactive and enable more short films to be shown.

A third objective is to develop a more knowledge-based Caribbean literature page, featuring new books and a top five publications list.

Luke said the fourth and most important objective is to develop an artist database that would enable interested members of the public to contact the artists directly.

He said the hope is to encourage people to gravitate towards the creative industries and show the public that there is plenty talent to be found in the Caribbean.

 

More info: Email [email protected], call 620-8567, or go to plentytalent.com

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