Education & Training

  • 2112Chicago’s first business incubator focused on the development of entrepreneurs in music, film/video, and creative industry-focused technologies, 2112 creates fertile ground for professional development and acceleration of its members through community, educational opportunities, and access to capital. 
  • 6 Tips to Improve Your Art Grant Applications: six suggestions from Fractured Atlas ranging from what works to what doesn't. 
  • 7 Essential Tools to Empower Artists as Entrepreneurs: tips about communication strategies, legal issues, digital marketing, fundraising, and more (June 2019, Americans for the Arts). 
  • Actors with Disabilities in Film/Hollywood: background and brief overview of disability within the film industry.
  • Artists Legacy Toolkit (Dance/USA): free, downloadable toolkit designed particularly for dancers to help performing artists and their organizations save and share the records of their work.  
  • Artists U: grassroots planning and professional development program run by and for artists.
  • Best Digital Tools to Boost Your Artistic Practice: a list of recommendations published by the Fractured Atlas Blog, on everything from project and financial management tools, to digital portfolios and promotional tools.
  • Best Ticketing Apps for Artists: here's a helpful guide from Fractured Atlas about online ticketing apps for artists and creatives (4/27/20)
  • Business of Art | How to Monetize and Build Online Performance Projects: from content ideas to a breakdown of digital platforms, this article provides tips on digitizing performance practices (5/14/21)
  • Career Documentation for the Visual Artist: a legacy planning workbook & resource guide offered in multiple free formats from the Joan Mitchell Foundation (11/1/22)
  • Chicago Dance History Project | Production House: individual artists and arts organizations can obtain production and archiving services from the Chicago Dance History Project, including recording live performances, creating promotional pieces, digitizing archival material, and more.
  • Chicago Dancemakers Forum: periodically offers professional development workshops, or other career-building initiatives, for dancemakers.
  • Chicago Sculpture International: provides opportunities for advancement and growth to professional sculptors. 
  • COVID-19 Presenting Your Work Online: an article published by New York Foundation for the Arts (NYFA) guiding artists through ways to digitally connect with their audience.
  • Craft Emergency Relief Fund (CERF+): provides direct services and links to other resources, including financial management, marketing, loan programs, legal issues, and business workshops.
  • Creating a Living Legacy (CALL): an initiative of the Joan Mitchell Foundation designed to support artists in the areas of studio organization, estate planning, archiving, inventory management, and more.
  • Creative Capital: through online and in-person trainings, this national organization provides career, community, and confidence building tools to help artists become successful artists.
  • Creativz: an online conversation about what artists in the United States need to sustain and strengthen their careers.
  • CRMs for Artists: a CRM is a customer relationship manager (or sometimes client relationship manager). This article from Fractured Atlas breaks down the pros and cons of CRMS for artists (4/27/20).
  • Digital Tools for Artists to Run a Remote Career During Coronavirus: published by Artwork Archive, this is a timely list of tools for artists to consider as they take their art businesses online, including video conferencing and video making platforms. 
  • Fractured Atlas: offers "tools and guidance so that artists can thrive, fully," including information on fiscal sponsorship, visas, fundraising, and more.
  • Handbook for Artists Working in Community: a practical manual, developed by Springboard for the Arts, for individual artists who would like to begin or deepen their artistic practice working in and with community.
  • How to Write an Artist Bio: an article on tips and models, by Fractured Atlas.
  • How to Write an Effective Project Narrative: this article by New York Foundation for the Arts (4/22/22) offers tips for organizing, brainstorming, and writing project narratives.
  • Inclusion in the Arts: lists resources designed specifically for artists of color and/or artists with disabilities in the performing arts (although of use and interest to every artist).
  • Making and Being: a hands-on guide comprising a book, a series of videos, a deck of cards, and an interactive website with freely downloadable content to support visual artists and arts educators.
  • Mental Health Resources to Help Prevent Creative and Professional Burnout: an article and free resources from University of California-Berkeley Extension.
  • Mental Health Support (Chicago region specific): a regularly updated website intended to provide resources and connections for mental health support.
  • NALAC Resource Guide: 2017 updated list of professional development resources published by the National Association of Latino Arts and Cultures (NALAC).
  • Patreon Guide2021 guide to using Patreon for Artists and Writers interested in membership platforms.
  • Respectful Audience Surveying Toolkit: a free, open-source toolkit designed to demystify and simplify on-site survey research to help small and not-so-small museums, arts organizations, and other public-engagement enterprises gather high-quality demographic information about their audiences.
  • Self-Employment in the Arts: conferences, workshops, panels, webinars, etc for artists in all disciplines.
  • Work of Art Toolkit: a free, online 12-part workbook and video series from Springboard for the Arts that guides artists of all disciplines through every facet of building a successful and sustainable career – from career planning, time management, marketing, and social media to pricing, recordkeeping, funding, and developing a business plan.

Insurance Information:

Getting the Right Insurance Coverage informs uninsured artists about the world of small business insurance and helps artists navigate the insurance industry to get adequate protection.

Here are some local providers of insurance, geared specifically to artists:

  • Fractured Atlas: insurance for individual artists and arts organizations
  • Links Hall: as part of their fiscal sponsorship program, Links also provides insurance
  • The Actors Fund: provides personal health insurance guidance, solutions-based health care counseling, experience-based health referrals, and more.

Residency Programs:

The Artist Communities Alliance (ACA) is an international association of artists residencies—a diverse field of more than 1,500 programs worldwide that provide time, space, and resources for artists to advance their creative practice.