Todd Thomas Brown is creating new work all the time
9

patrons

$407
per month

WELCOME

The virtual patron connection is happening, thanks to this patreon platform. I'm now well into the first half of the year and it's making a difference. I'm presently based in Naples, Italy, creating new work and charting new waters, though I will be making visits to Vermont and the San Francisco Bay Area during the year. Once you connect, I'll be able to share with you the inside thoughts on my current process and work, which is really not just about paintings or music, but a manner of engaging life, the world, the beauty and complexity of living. My desire is to share more on the inner-life behind the work. This makes for richer conversations and connections when we actually next get to each other. For the time being, I'm leaving the original introductory text below for new people to read. Please shoot me a hello message if you have a chance!

~ todd 

I've divided the text below is in two sections; the first gives you the skinny on what the Patreon platform is all about and how I am using it, and the second to introduce the most recent developments with my work and the new directions I am undertaking.


PATREON: HOW IT WORKS and MY PARTICULAR APPROACH
First, to be very clear up front, you are not donating or giving me money. Rather, I am using Patreon as a way for people to contribute funds in advance for artworks they will select to purchase in the future. Let me explain.

Patreon is a relatively new online platform designed to facilitate support for artists by individuals that believe in their work. Rather than asking for money for a one-time project, Patreon is about supporters joining as members to make a regularly occurring contribution, effectively becoming a "patron" of a specific artist, and receiving something in return. It builds on the idea of artists in past centuries who had wealthy patrons that supported/commissioned their work. With Patreon, the support is from a wealth divided and shared among many. (They have a great little video clip that explains it here: https://www.patreon.com/about). In my case, it enables you to build a monthly deposit that will go towards a future purchase of one of my paintings (of your choice). It turns the “pay over time” model around and into a “build a deposit” model, where patrons essentially prepay for works they choose later at their leisure.

Why this approach? The fabulous way in which this supports me is that, by having regularly occurring payments, I am better able to project and budget my expenses and thereby be even more focused on the creative work itself.  Other benefits include the fact that there are people that normally buy my work, there are people that often express the desire for a piece, but are unable to pay so much money at once. There are also potential buyers that intend to make a purchase but then get busy with life (because that's what happens) and much time goes by before they act on it. So, my intuition tells me this might be a good strategy for both enlisting new buyers and helping to make sure time doesn't slip away with people that would like to acquire my artwork. You get to decide when to acquire a painting, at which point the total amount of your deposits will go towards making the purchase.

The real difference for me in this arrangement is the relationship between work and money. Rather than having the sale of my work be reduced to what is essentially a consumer purchase of a product (artwork), patronage via Patreon moves to a deeper and far more impactful level of supporting the process, that of research and experimentation, from which new and compelling work is sprung. This is to say, the difference is not merely financial but philosophical


ON THE INTERNATIONAL SCENE - WHERE THINGS ARE HEADED
If you are considering joining me in this adventure, you very likely are already familiar with some of my work. It's been said that a writer is always writing the same book, and that a filmmaker is always making the same film. I feel like my practice is asking questions, a kind of ongoing performative inquiry, and while I use different disciplines to investigate these questions through different lenses, they're always the same questions. Whether it is my visual art practice, interdisciplinary performative work, music projects, or larger scale community-based projects such as the Red Poppy Art House and the Mission Arts & Performance Project, the same themes and sensibility continue through each. All of it represents an ongoing live inquiry into possibilities of intersection and connection between individuals from different cultural communities, the slowness of being and its power, a sense of presence cultivated within spaces of encounter such that invites us into our deeper selves, and a reverence for the intrinsic intelligence of the biological organism that is our body-being; this the mystery of life, and us being in and of it. Even while having to continuously navigate current events, I invariably find myself pulled back into the larger archetypal/mystical scope, the large arcs of the living, and the myths we create and live by. 

The work keeps moving, keeps pushing me along, and so here's a quick glance of what's cooking on my stove, front and back burners both:

  • Painting: I never stop painting. It is what I do, and i'm curious to see what influence my new environment will have on future works I create. I have already begun a series of small mixed media works on linen, but I'm eager to move on to larger format once I'm situated in a new studio space in Naples. These works of course will be among the pieces that you will see and get to choose as a patron using the Patreon platform. 
  • Residential and Street-level Cultural Projects: Already I have encountered a handful of artists in Naples interested in seeding a project akin to San Francisco's MAPP festival. I have two other additional contacts interested in exploring the possibility of something similar in one of the many half-abandoned small towns in the Italian countryside where economic opportunities are scarce. 
  • Writing: since the outset of 2018, I have dedicated much of my morning to writing. Until now, the only public presentations of my writing have been through the monologues I have presented in performance pieces. Presently, for the first time, I have begun work on a short compilation of writings for print. Already I am working with an Italian colleague who has begun translations, so that we can circulate the writings among our peers in Naples for critical feedback. 
  • Music & Interdisciplinary Performance lies farthest on the learning curve for me, at the edges of my comfort zone. I have not returned to music professionally since an accident in 2010 wherein I broke both my wrists. That happened in the midst of executing a recording contract with Porto Franco Records, to record and release the first album of Nefasha Ayer, an ensemble that I began together with vocalist with Meklit Hadero. Though not returning to music composition after the accident, I was since able to produce three different interdisciplinary projects that included musical elements; Teobi's Dreaming, This. Now., and Scarlett Cushion. However, I feel that the best is still yet to come!  

All this is, well, ambitious, to say the least. Overly so, most would say. I cannot help myself with this. Each discipline for me is like one of the five (or more) senses, capturing its own color, taste, smell, texture, sound. Each discipline pushes against and informs the others, and this is how I feel my way through life's mercurial forest and sea. It's not infrequent that it feels overwhelming.



To learn more about my work, please visit my website HERE.
You can also see my most recent works, works-in-progress, and adventures, on my instagram page. 

Tiers
I want to vote, "Forward-Ho TTBrown, I'm with You!"
$2 or more per month 0 patrons
Knowing that many of the people in my community are also artists, or involved in nonprofit work (i.e. receive less compensation than the for-profit sector), and face extra challenges by the economy, I wanted to have a way for those of you to cast your 'vote' of support by signing on with a symbolic amount. This could be $1-$5 per month. It feels wonderful to have this connection, and I'll be better able to keep you tuned-in to my developments in Southern Italy. 
Sustainer - I want to make sure you keep on the path
$10 or more per month 1 patron
Apart from celebrity-level achievement in the arts, the vast majority of artists and arts organizations struggle continually to merely just get by. The arts simply do not work in the way that our commercial market economy functions, because one-of-a-kind objects and experiences can be mass produced without losing the very quality that makes them so unique and transformative. While we, as a culture, have yet to find a model of support in which artists can thrive, we still can take direct action by supporting individual artists. A small handful people contributing $10 - $20 per month can make an enormous impact on the sustainability of an individual artists work. For myself, it can cover basic materials and smaller monthly expenses. You can also look forward to special annual gathering in San Francisco that I am planning as a way to celebrate everyone that joins my patron base of support. (I will plan a smaller one in Vermont for those of you on the east coast).
I've always wanted an original TTBrown painting. . .
$25 or more per month 2 patrons
This is an especially good option for those of you that would really like to buy a piece but always feel strapped for funds. $25-$50, this is where you can begin to build credit for the purchase of one of my smaller original artworks (12 months x $25 is $300, enough for a small paintings). Think of it as putting something on layaway and paying over time. I will track your monthly payment, and you can choose at any time to cash it in on a painting of your choice. 


I'll send you updates as my work projects progress in Naples. You can also look forward to special annual gathering in San Francisco that I am planning as a way to celebrate everyone that joins my patron base of support. (I will plan a smaller one in Vermont for those of you on the east coast).

Hmmm, maybe I'll start collecting. . .
$100 or more per month 2 patrons
$100/mo., and up, will allow you to establish substantial credit within one year's time for a purchase of one of my medium-larger works. This is also a level of support where I can begin longer term planning, including planning of community-engaged projects that do not generate revenue. The sale of medium and larger works is what helps give me the freedom to think bigger.  


As someone that presently makes his living from the sale of his artwork, I cannot express how remarkable it is to move through life in this way. In my view, buying a painting is not a "purchase" in the consumer sense, but an investment into the energy of creativity, not simply on the individual level but as a principled act. By the time I sell a piece, the time and the work it took to create it has long passed. I don't get that back ever. What I receive as payment I do not see as compensation for my time/work, rather, I see it as a present investment into what I am doing next. It's like 'paying it forward'. This understanding invokes an entirely different and more expansive relationship. It is the difference in the relationship of giving and receiving as compared to that of purchasing and acquiring. One opens and is expansive, while the other closes and is restrictive. One is in movement, the other, static. So, here, as a patron, when you give, you not only receive a painting, but your giving funnels into ever more creativity activity. It is my job to make sure this activity is worthwhile and brings some goodness to the world.  


I'll send you updates as my work projects progress in Naples. You can also look forward to special annual gathering in San Francisco that I am planning as a way to celebrate everyone that joins my patron base of support. (I will plan a smaller one in Vermont for those of you on the east coast).

Catalyst
$500 or more per month 0 patrons
$500 and up. . .  this is not something I expect, but stranger things happen in life, so I like to keep the door open. If you are familiar with the trajectory of my work across disciplines, then you know well that I am forever thinking outside the box of my studio. Studio practice is a mediation and a form of sustenance. Beyond the studio walls, however, is is the hot mess of life, and I am always thinking on how I might nect engage it, and this means working with other collaborators, doing something to take our action to the next level. This level of support, of course, gives access to acquiring a large-scale artwork. It also serves as a catalyst to push into taking bigger steps. Like receiving an unrestricted grant from a foundation, it compels an artist, hopefully, into greater risk-taking. 


I'll of course send you updates as my work projects progress in Naples. And, along with joining a special annual gathering in San Francisco that I am planning for my patron base of support, we can plan a private time to break bread and discuss more deeply all the developments to date.

WELCOME

The virtual patron connection is happening, thanks to this patreon platform. I'm now well into the first half of the year and it's making a difference. I'm presently based in Naples, Italy, creating new work and charting new waters, though I will be making visits to Vermont and the San Francisco Bay Area during the year. Once you connect, I'll be able to share with you the inside thoughts on my current process and work, which is really not just about paintings or music, but a manner of engaging life, the world, the beauty and complexity of living. My desire is to share more on the inner-life behind the work. This makes for richer conversations and connections when we actually next get to each other. For the time being, I'm leaving the original introductory text below for new people to read. Please shoot me a hello message if you have a chance!

~ todd 

I've divided the text below is in two sections; the first gives you the skinny on what the Patreon platform is all about and how I am using it, and the second to introduce the most recent developments with my work and the new directions I am undertaking.


PATREON: HOW IT WORKS and MY PARTICULAR APPROACH
First, to be very clear up front, you are not donating or giving me money. Rather, I am using Patreon as a way for people to contribute funds in advance for artworks they will select to purchase in the future. Let me explain.

Patreon is a relatively new online platform designed to facilitate support for artists by individuals that believe in their work. Rather than asking for money for a one-time project, Patreon is about supporters joining as members to make a regularly occurring contribution, effectively becoming a "patron" of a specific artist, and receiving something in return. It builds on the idea of artists in past centuries who had wealthy patrons that supported/commissioned their work. With Patreon, the support is from a wealth divided and shared among many. (They have a great little video clip that explains it here: https://www.patreon.com/about). In my case, it enables you to build a monthly deposit that will go towards a future purchase of one of my paintings (of your choice). It turns the “pay over time” model around and into a “build a deposit” model, where patrons essentially prepay for works they choose later at their leisure.

Why this approach? The fabulous way in which this supports me is that, by having regularly occurring payments, I am better able to project and budget my expenses and thereby be even more focused on the creative work itself.  Other benefits include the fact that there are people that normally buy my work, there are people that often express the desire for a piece, but are unable to pay so much money at once. There are also potential buyers that intend to make a purchase but then get busy with life (because that's what happens) and much time goes by before they act on it. So, my intuition tells me this might be a good strategy for both enlisting new buyers and helping to make sure time doesn't slip away with people that would like to acquire my artwork. You get to decide when to acquire a painting, at which point the total amount of your deposits will go towards making the purchase.

The real difference for me in this arrangement is the relationship between work and money. Rather than having the sale of my work be reduced to what is essentially a consumer purchase of a product (artwork), patronage via Patreon moves to a deeper and far more impactful level of supporting the process, that of research and experimentation, from which new and compelling work is sprung. This is to say, the difference is not merely financial but philosophical


ON THE INTERNATIONAL SCENE - WHERE THINGS ARE HEADED
If you are considering joining me in this adventure, you very likely are already familiar with some of my work. It's been said that a writer is always writing the same book, and that a filmmaker is always making the same film. I feel like my practice is asking questions, a kind of ongoing performative inquiry, and while I use different disciplines to investigate these questions through different lenses, they're always the same questions. Whether it is my visual art practice, interdisciplinary performative work, music projects, or larger scale community-based projects such as the Red Poppy Art House and the Mission Arts & Performance Project, the same themes and sensibility continue through each. All of it represents an ongoing live inquiry into possibilities of intersection and connection between individuals from different cultural communities, the slowness of being and its power, a sense of presence cultivated within spaces of encounter such that invites us into our deeper selves, and a reverence for the intrinsic intelligence of the biological organism that is our body-being; this the mystery of life, and us being in and of it. Even while having to continuously navigate current events, I invariably find myself pulled back into the larger archetypal/mystical scope, the large arcs of the living, and the myths we create and live by. 

The work keeps moving, keeps pushing me along, and so here's a quick glance of what's cooking on my stove, front and back burners both:

  • Painting: I never stop painting. It is what I do, and i'm curious to see what influence my new environment will have on future works I create. I have already begun a series of small mixed media works on linen, but I'm eager to move on to larger format once I'm situated in a new studio space in Naples. These works of course will be among the pieces that you will see and get to choose as a patron using the Patreon platform. 
  • Residential and Street-level Cultural Projects: Already I have encountered a handful of artists in Naples interested in seeding a project akin to San Francisco's MAPP festival. I have two other additional contacts interested in exploring the possibility of something similar in one of the many half-abandoned small towns in the Italian countryside where economic opportunities are scarce. 
  • Writing: since the outset of 2018, I have dedicated much of my morning to writing. Until now, the only public presentations of my writing have been through the monologues I have presented in performance pieces. Presently, for the first time, I have begun work on a short compilation of writings for print. Already I am working with an Italian colleague who has begun translations, so that we can circulate the writings among our peers in Naples for critical feedback. 
  • Music & Interdisciplinary Performance lies farthest on the learning curve for me, at the edges of my comfort zone. I have not returned to music professionally since an accident in 2010 wherein I broke both my wrists. That happened in the midst of executing a recording contract with Porto Franco Records, to record and release the first album of Nefasha Ayer, an ensemble that I began together with vocalist with Meklit Hadero. Though not returning to music composition after the accident, I was since able to produce three different interdisciplinary projects that included musical elements; Teobi's Dreaming, This. Now., and Scarlett Cushion. However, I feel that the best is still yet to come!  

All this is, well, ambitious, to say the least. Overly so, most would say. I cannot help myself with this. Each discipline for me is like one of the five (or more) senses, capturing its own color, taste, smell, texture, sound. Each discipline pushes against and informs the others, and this is how I feel my way through life's mercurial forest and sea. It's not infrequent that it feels overwhelming.



To learn more about my work, please visit my website HERE.
You can also see my most recent works, works-in-progress, and adventures, on my instagram page. 

Recent posts by Todd Thomas Brown

Tiers
I want to vote, "Forward-Ho TTBrown, I'm with You!"
$2 or more per month 0 patrons
Knowing that many of the people in my community are also artists, or involved in nonprofit work (i.e. receive less compensation than the for-profit sector), and face extra challenges by the economy, I wanted to have a way for those of you to cast your 'vote' of support by signing on with a symbolic amount. This could be $1-$5 per month. It feels wonderful to have this connection, and I'll be better able to keep you tuned-in to my developments in Southern Italy. 
Sustainer - I want to make sure you keep on the path
$10 or more per month 1 patron
Apart from celebrity-level achievement in the arts, the vast majority of artists and arts organizations struggle continually to merely just get by. The arts simply do not work in the way that our commercial market economy functions, because one-of-a-kind objects and experiences can be mass produced without losing the very quality that makes them so unique and transformative. While we, as a culture, have yet to find a model of support in which artists can thrive, we still can take direct action by supporting individual artists. A small handful people contributing $10 - $20 per month can make an enormous impact on the sustainability of an individual artists work. For myself, it can cover basic materials and smaller monthly expenses. You can also look forward to special annual gathering in San Francisco that I am planning as a way to celebrate everyone that joins my patron base of support. (I will plan a smaller one in Vermont for those of you on the east coast).
I've always wanted an original TTBrown painting. . .
$25 or more per month 2 patrons
This is an especially good option for those of you that would really like to buy a piece but always feel strapped for funds. $25-$50, this is where you can begin to build credit for the purchase of one of my smaller original artworks (12 months x $25 is $300, enough for a small paintings). Think of it as putting something on layaway and paying over time. I will track your monthly payment, and you can choose at any time to cash it in on a painting of your choice. 


I'll send you updates as my work projects progress in Naples. You can also look forward to special annual gathering in San Francisco that I am planning as a way to celebrate everyone that joins my patron base of support. (I will plan a smaller one in Vermont for those of you on the east coast).

Hmmm, maybe I'll start collecting. . .
$100 or more per month 2 patrons
$100/mo., and up, will allow you to establish substantial credit within one year's time for a purchase of one of my medium-larger works. This is also a level of support where I can begin longer term planning, including planning of community-engaged projects that do not generate revenue. The sale of medium and larger works is what helps give me the freedom to think bigger.  


As someone that presently makes his living from the sale of his artwork, I cannot express how remarkable it is to move through life in this way. In my view, buying a painting is not a "purchase" in the consumer sense, but an investment into the energy of creativity, not simply on the individual level but as a principled act. By the time I sell a piece, the time and the work it took to create it has long passed. I don't get that back ever. What I receive as payment I do not see as compensation for my time/work, rather, I see it as a present investment into what I am doing next. It's like 'paying it forward'. This understanding invokes an entirely different and more expansive relationship. It is the difference in the relationship of giving and receiving as compared to that of purchasing and acquiring. One opens and is expansive, while the other closes and is restrictive. One is in movement, the other, static. So, here, as a patron, when you give, you not only receive a painting, but your giving funnels into ever more creativity activity. It is my job to make sure this activity is worthwhile and brings some goodness to the world.  


I'll send you updates as my work projects progress in Naples. You can also look forward to special annual gathering in San Francisco that I am planning as a way to celebrate everyone that joins my patron base of support. (I will plan a smaller one in Vermont for those of you on the east coast).

Catalyst
$500 or more per month 0 patrons
$500 and up. . .  this is not something I expect, but stranger things happen in life, so I like to keep the door open. If you are familiar with the trajectory of my work across disciplines, then you know well that I am forever thinking outside the box of my studio. Studio practice is a mediation and a form of sustenance. Beyond the studio walls, however, is is the hot mess of life, and I am always thinking on how I might nect engage it, and this means working with other collaborators, doing something to take our action to the next level. This level of support, of course, gives access to acquiring a large-scale artwork. It also serves as a catalyst to push into taking bigger steps. Like receiving an unrestricted grant from a foundation, it compels an artist, hopefully, into greater risk-taking. 


I'll of course send you updates as my work projects progress in Naples. And, along with joining a special annual gathering in San Francisco that I am planning for my patron base of support, we can plan a private time to break bread and discuss more deeply all the developments to date.