Art is your business conference in May

Art is Your Business conference coming up in May is designed to help artists and creative business people build and grow their businesses.

Art is Your Business is the title of a conference coming up in May that is designed to help artists and creative business people to build and grow their businesses.

“We grow stronger by coming together as a community, sharing our wisdom and supporting each other,” says event spokesperson Beth Holden. “This rings true in all of society but especially for the creative sector.”

The workshop will be offered from May 3 to 5 by Island Mountain Arts Society, in partnership with The Central Cariboo Arts and Culture Society and The Station House Gallery.

“This weekend event is composed of hands-on workshops, discussion groups and lectures designed to equip creative entrepreneurs with tools to enhance and grow their businesses,” says Holden. “Just in time for the busy summer season these workshops will get participants on track with marketing tools, a better sense of accounting and bookkeeping and strong goals for their own businesses.

“Networking with local and regional creative entrepreneurs can lead to strong marketing partnerships, build community and enhance business.”

Art is Your Business will be held in various locations in downtown Williams Lake.

An opening reception at the Station House Gallery will kick off the conference at 7 p.m. on Friday, May 3.

Saturday and Sunday the bulk of the workshops will be held at the Central Cariboo Arts Centre next to city hall.

Breakfasts and lunches will be provided.

Bill Usher, a successful musician with years of entrepreneurial practice in both the for-profit and the not-for-profit sectors will be among the presenters. He has toured Canada and presented enriched artistic experiences for all ages since 1977.

A key player in building musical legions such as Sharon, Lois and Bram, he also worked for the Ontario Arts Council and has been instrumental in the reformation of the Golden Arts Council creating Kicking Horse Culture (

His skills include marketing, branding, grant writing, community outreach and much more.

Amy Quarry will help participants make marketing work for them.

“You may recognize her name from her successful marketing business, AdBoom as well as Small Town Love, a project that promotes community and small businesses in and around Quesnel,” Holden says.

From banjo building to singing, teaching and more Jason and Pharis Romero, of Horsefly will talk about diversifying business.

Other regional specialists include Graham Kelsey, recipient of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal; Angela Sommers, who runs an extremely successful small music business; Paul Crawford, curator of the Penticton Art Gallery; Julie Fowler, one of the key members of the ArtsWells Festival; and Justin Calof president of the highly successful Cariboo Mountain Consortium.

Island Mountain Arts has delivered successful programming for more than 35 years.

Projects include Art is Your Business, the Toni Onley Artists’ Project, concerts, exhibits and the ArtsWells Festival of all Things Art.

The conference is made possible with financial support from the Cariboo Chilcotin Beetle Action Coalition.

For more information and to register please contact Island Mountain Arts at 1-800-442-2787, or

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