SOUTH SHORE — A spring session of classes to help artists learn the skills needed to run their own business will have a South Shore focus as neighborhood leaders roll out their long-simmering arts initiative.
The 12-week Artisan Collective academy runs 6-9 p.m. Wednesdays March 3-May 26. Course topics include budgeting, marketing, bookkeeping and insurance, and three simulations of a month-long business cycle will be held.
There are up to 25 spaces available for the virtual academy, and applications will be accepted online until the course is full, said Tonya Trice, South Shore Chamber executive director.
The registration fee for the 12-week course is $200. To apply, click here.
Instructor Anisha McFarland Hill will lead the classes, which are being offered through a partnership between Sunshine Enterprises in Woodlawn and the South Shore Chamber’s Artisan Collective program.
The program helped Hill — “a performing artist in nature” — get a needed introduction to the business side of her craft, she said.
“Give me a contract — some music to sing or perform — I’m good with that,” Hill said. “But to go on the other side of the table to say, ‘I’m the boss of this business’ … that side of having a small business was really what the Community Business Academy classes introduced me to.”
The course is open to anyone, but recruitment is being targeted to South Shore residents, Trice said.
Participants will also be recruited to join the Artisan Collective’s co-working and retail space at 1738 E. 71st St., which is being rolled out this year with support from University of Chicago business students. Monthly rates are $250-$500 depending on studio size.
“We’re very excited about this collaboration, and we’re grateful [the Community Business Academy] will help us to launch the Artisan Collective program,” Trice said. “We’ve been working on it for two years now. This year an opportunity to get it fully up and running.”
The Community Business Academy is “intense, and it can be scary, but it can be very enlightening at the same time,” Hill said.
“I am trying to help artisans; artists and makers; people in the service industry [learn] how we make our businesses successful,” Hill said. “We’re creators, but we still have to make money. It’s that element that can be a struggle for an artist.”
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