I was hanging out in Huntington Beach on a Tuesday night with a group of BMX friends. These weren’t just ANY BMXers, though. Among them were legendary riders Eddie Fiola and Martin Aparijo, as well as Bill Allen, the actor who played Cru Jones in the cult classic film Rad. I was hanging out and producing a couple of video interviews for a project Bill was working on.
While I had the lights set up, Eddie asked me to get a dramatically lit image of everyone there, There were about 30 riders hanging out, riding and having a little beach barbecue. They all lined up, we shot a very cool portrait, then I asked Eddie, Martin and Bill to hang out while I reset the lights again and did a portrait of the three of them. I loved the drama created by the light and the strong foreground shadow.
I thought it was a great image, so I laid out some type on it to make it look like a movie poster and posted it on a Facebook page or two to share with the guys. The response was overwhelming, to say the least. EVERYONE wanted a poster.
I wasn’t sure if everyone would actually buy one if we paid to print it up, so I talked it over with the guys and we started a Kickstarter campaign. I just wanted enough to cover printing, buying some shipping tubes, paying for postage, etc. That started to take off, and I learned a lot about Kickstarter. Most people don’t understand crowdfunding, so I spent some time online explaining it. It’s very low risk, if the campaign doesn’t reach 100% funding, nobody pays anything. Those personal explanations helped, in two weeks we wound up with 154% of what we originally needed.
44% of Kickstarter campaigns get fully funded, and those that don’t owe nothing. Those that do, they take a cut off the top. It’s a great way to do it, I learned a LOT in the process, but now I’m starting to get pictures back from those that earned a signed poster, seeing that they have them framed and are loving them.
It was a great experience with lots of personal stories from fans. People can still order posters, signed or unsigned, at Eddiefiola.co.
Now I’m getting ready for my next crowdfunding project, a series of video interviews. Stay tuned!