This summer, Creature Comforts Brewing Co. will hold its third annual Get Artistic community impact program. In an effort to sustain the vibrancy of the Athens creative community, Get Artistic helps artists overcome financial obstacles inhibiting their creative pursuits.
Get Artistic launched in June 2018 and has since disbursed over $34,000 in unrestricted grants to support art-focused nonprofits and individual artists working in Athens. Primarily funded through Creature Comforts' Get Artistic beer and associated merchandise, money for this year’s initiative will be raised through Oct. 31 and distributed among grant recipients.
According to a 2020 press release, Get Artistic intends to increase accessibility, diversity and inclusion in the arts for creators and consumers. By doing so, artists will have a greater opportunity for professional development.
The Get Artistic program doesn’t narrowly define art. Whether it be visual, musical, movement, film or theater, Get Artistic is open to funding individuals and nonprofits from various artistic backgrounds.
Local artist and entrepreneur Broderick Flanigan was one of the six 2019 grant recipients of the Get Artistic initiative. Flanigan discovered the program through the program’s lead, Madeline Bates, who explained to him how Get Artistic would help the Athens creative community thrive.
“[As an artist], there’s limited access to funding for programs and projects that you may want to do,” Flanigan said. “I definitely experienced this when I first started my studio, and I had to pivot [from a business perspective] to come up with viable ways to produce art and to make a living as a visual artist.”
After receiving his grant, Flanigan put many of his newfound resources toward his outreach initiative called Helping Art Reach Public Spaces (HARPS). Flanigan founded HARPS in 2015 as a way to introduce hands-on entrepreneurial and artistic development experiences to Athens youth.
Flanigan says he is grateful for the opportunities that he has been given within the local artistic community. When giving advice to struggling creatives, Flanigan recommends staying diligent in your artistic pursuits and not being afraid to lean on others for help or motivation.
“Stay resilient and keep pushing,” Flanigan said. “Re-examine your practice and your approach by seeking out other professional artists that have reached goals similar to yours and gain insight from them.”
Creature Comforts is currently accepting proposals from those seeking to become grant recipients for this year's Get Artistic initiative. Applications must be tied to a specific purpose, ranging from programming, outreach initiatives, purchase of equipment or supplies, funds for professional development training and more.
Applicants must be at least 18 years old and live or work in Athens. In their application, participants must submit criteria such as contact information, digital portfolios, overall cost of proposals and more. Applications will be accepted through July 17.