Let us fill you in. We've got the whole 411 below.
RAW is an international arts organization, for artists by
artists. We have no investors and started this all with
passion, blood, sweat and elbow grease. We are 100%
sustained by ticket sales to our RAW showcases. We are
accountable only to our artists; we have no shareholders,
board members or venture capitalists in our corner. We built
this organization from scratch.
RAW provides a platform for independent artists. Our
platform exists both online—through our website and social
media—and offline through showcase events (in over 70
Our website features artist’s profiles from around the
world. It is an online hub where you can discover
independent filmmakers, fashion designers, musicians, visual
artists, performing artists, hair stylists, makeup artists,
accessories designers, makers, tech designers, and
photographers. Our showcases consist of short film
screenings, fashion shows, a pop-up art and photo gallery,
performances, hair and makeup shows and accessories vendors.
Artists are hand-selected to participate in RAW (read more
on that below). Artists receive an opportunity to showcase
and sell their work at these events (to a crowd of people
that probably would have never been exposed to it
We bring artists to the people, and people to artists. The
showcase events aren’t stuffy — they are fun, loud, and
colorful and are usually hosted in a music venue. These are
alternative venues that accommodate all of the different
genres of art that we showcase. We’re not a white wall
gallery or Mercedes Benz Fashion Week—nor are we trying to
be. We’re RAW and our mission is serve the creative
community worldwide. We think outside of the box to provide
opportunities for artists to be seen, heard and loved.
IS THERE A FEE TO PARTICIPATE?
Yes; well, kind of. There is a showcase fee to participate
in RAW. However, we are aware of the starting artist’s
plight and that paying a fee is not always possible. Instead
of artists paying out-of-pocket upfront, they are encouraged
to sell tickets to the event to make up for the
participation costs. Tickets are $22-$25 pre-sale (depending
on the market).
Participating RAW artists commit to selling 20 tickets to
the event they are showcasing in. An artist is able to
enlist their supporters and network to sponsor their show.
Once they have done so, the show costs are completely paid
for. Not only does this contribute to the costs of the
show’s production, but it helps encourage our artists to
promote and, as a result, each show becomes a group effort
and helps build an eclectic audience of guests who are all
there to support the arts. It creates more exposure for all
who are involved.
We have built an online system to help you crowdfund your
fee easily. So you technically don’t have to pay anything if
you’re willing to put in the work. Most everyone has 20
friends, family members or co-workers that would help
support them to be in the show, and they get to attend!
If you don’t sell all of your tickets you simply pay the
difference a week before the show and are able to add guests
to the list to account for that amount paid.
WHAT DO I RECEIVE AS AN ARTIST?
A ton! Participating RAW artists receive:
A profile portfolio on RAWartists.com to upload pics,
videos, MP3s and more information on yourself and your
work. (reserved only for RAW artists)
- Promotion on our localized social media outlets.
Placement in the RAW Showcase Event (a showcase with
Professional head shots and photos of your work,
collection, performance, band or whatever you happen to be
presenting (also great for portfolios, social media or
A free showcase: Once you have showcased in your city and
completed your ticket commitment, you can showcase in any
other city (within a year of your first showcase) as a
Tour Incentive FOR FREE! Yep, we want you to keep your
work moving. Have your art seen or heard in Toronto,
Austin, Minneapolis, Los Angeles or even Sydney!
Complimentary admission into any RAW show +1 guest,
Education: We work really hard to get you advice from the
experts on different facets of the creative professional
world. Our blog and other programs are places you can
We have strategic partnerships with organizations,
companies and industry players to continue to bring more
opportunities to the forefront.
So if you think selling 20 tickets is worth it, we encourage
you to sign up!
CAN I SELL MY WORK AT A RAW EVENT?
Yes, please do! We take 0% commission. RAW artists have sold
hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of artwork,
accessories, clothing, CDs, and prints at our RAW events.
OK, TOTALLY GET IT. I'M IN! WHAT'S NEXT?
First, make sure that you have submitted
here. A RAW team member will
review your submission. If we like what we see/hear, you’ll
be contacted. You will need to complete a Selected Artist
Interview with the RAW representative in your city. If
everyone is on the same page and committed we’ll make sure
you are officially ‘booked’ into the event and we’ll guide
you through the process.
BUT, WHY SHOULD ARTISTS HAVE TO SELL TICKETS?
While we wish everything we need to put on a big beneficial
showcase event came free, the reality is, it doesn’t. We pay
our staff modest salaries; we provide them with medical
benefits (we need them healthy to run great shows); we have
venue fees, insurance, equipment rentals, our media crews,
production assistants, and the never-ending list of expenses
that comes with growing an international network. We would
rather have our artists invest in our mission and push it
forward, than be accountable to shareholders. So, this is
our creative way of making RAW completely for artists, by
WHAT IF I DON'T WANT TO SELL TICKETS?
We know that RAW isn’t for everyone. Selling tickets takes
dedication and work, just like starting your creative
career. You have to know how to ask your supporters for
their help. If it’s not your jam, that’s okay.
ARE YOU A NON-PROFIT?
No. When we first started RAW in 2009, we thought it may be
a good idea to be a non-profit. However, after art grants
continued to be cut down to nothing, we decided we could do
more and grow to other communities faster by going our own
way. It felt better to spend our time building great
showcases instead of throwing fundraising galas to pay our
DO YOU HAVE ANY ARTIST SUCCESS STORIES?
While we can’t take credit for the years of work an artist
might put in before and after meeting RAW, a lot of our
artists have told us that RAW has changed their lives and
careers for the better. Musicians have been signed, artists
have sold work and gained gallery placement, and designers
have been sold in stores and have even won Project Runway.
We are just happy to be a part of their journey. You can
read more about what people say