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Around Your ART

I Lost Rights to My Own Name: How to Safeguard Your IP

Do you know if your intellectual property is protected? 

Legal considerations aren't usually something entrepreneurs get excited about when they're first starting their business. After all, it's way more fun creating products and finding a customer base who resonates with and appreciates what you do, right?

But, failure to at least think through how you're protecting your work can lead to a lot of problems that can bring your business to a grinding halt - or, worst-case scenario, lose you the rights to your own name or your creative work.

Most entrepreneurs figure this out the hard way... 

But in this panel discussion, you can tap into the experiences of three very successful entrepreneurs who faced - and OVERCAME - early IP issues and don't want you to make the same mistakes. 

Meet the Panelists:

Kay Unger is the CEO of Kay Unger Design and Chair Emerita of Parsons School of Design. She's a fashion designer, entrepreneur and philanthropist, and top designer...

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How to Craft a Value Proposition for Your Creative Business

Your creative work is so unique. But how do you convey that value to customers and clients? That's where your value proposition comes into play!

A value proposition is a concise way to describe the unique value you, your company, and your product or service will provide your customer or client. It's a way to differentiate yourself from all the other creatives and creative businesses out there. But it goes even further than that. A strong value proposition allows you to attract the people who truly align with what you're all about. 

Now, actually writing a concise statement that accomplishes all that can definitely feel overwhelming, and that's why we brought in PwC strategy and design expert John Jones to lead an interactive workshop guiding our members through writing their very own unique value proposition tree. 

John has 20 years experience in service design, product design, strategic planning and brand development across multiple consumer touchpoints...

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The Easiest Way to Write a Business Plan as an Artist

As a creative, the very thought of writing a business plan can be well... intimidating as all HECK. Not to mention most business plans seem more like mini books filled with numbers and charts and investor-friendly language. Without business training, it can be hard to figure out where to start, and so it becomes one of those things we know we should do, but keep putting off. 

Thing is -- having a great business plan to follow can actually free up your creative mind, by removing any doubts about whether you’re putting your energy into the right activities…
 
...and creating one is FAR simpler than we’re led to believe!
 
You just need a tried-and-true model, and a mentor who can show you how to use it.
 
That's why we brought in award-winning strategist, business advisor, creative executive coach, and mentor, Shani Syphrett-Haynes to show you how to create an easy-but-effective ONE-PAGE business plan that will set you up for...
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Why Being Great Is NOT Enough for Today's Creatives

entrepreneurship Dec 30, 2020

Being good at your creative craft isn’t enough to build a career.

Being great at your creative craft isn’t even enough to build a career.

You devote yourself to cultivating your craft and developing your gift, while your friends and family cheer you on… or perhaps, against their wishes, because your passion gives you no other choice…

And after YEARS of hard work, the message everyone sends your way is, 

“Wow, you’re really talented. Good enough to really go somewhere with it, if you get lucky!”

And yet, for 99% of the artists who are “good enough” at their craft, in the eyes of the layperson, to make a career of it…

The “powers that be” couldn’t care less about your talent, your discipline, your focus, or your passion.

This is the uncomfortable reality of the digital era which we find ourselves in…

It was harder for creatives to become GREAT

As a species, we’ve been building...

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The 4 M's of Successful Entrepreneurs

What does it take for a creative entrepreneur to succeed?

What separates the artists and musicians who never get their ideas off the ground from the self-made icons who create global brands, perennial best-sellers, and have a lasting impact on their market - and society as a whole?

This is a question that the team here at Parsons Entrepreneur Academy have studied obsessively…

And the insight that has emerged… is that there are some key “factors” that nearly ALL successful entrepreneurs have in common.

Let’s call them… 

The 4 M’s of Entrepreneurial Success:

1 - Mindset

2 - Mentorship

3 - Methodology

4 - The Mastermind Effect

Now, to be clear, these 4 factors are the things that allow a talented, creative genius like yourself to make it in BUSINESS.

You wouldn’t be here, reading this, if you didn’t already have something incredible to add to the world… You’re already a talented and innovative artist,...

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How ShopShops CEO Liyia Wu Raised 20 Million for Her Startup

To say Liyia Wu is a Jane of all trades would be an understatement. 

Parsons Entrepreneur Academy had the chance to chat with Liyia Wu, the CEO, and co-founder of ShopShops — an innovative shopping platform that connects brick-and-mortar stores with consumers across the globe.  

From Parsons to Entrepreneur: How Liyia Wu Went From Graduate to CEO

Shortly after graduating from Saunder’s Business School of the University of British Columbia with a double major in finance and accounting, Wu decided to delve into the media industry in Beijing. It didn’t take long, however, for Wu’s true passion to find and persuade her into moving to the fashion capital of the decade — New York City. 

“I've always loved fashion,” says Wu. “When I graduated from the program [Associate of Arts and Sciences (AAS) Fashion Merchandising at Parsons], I worked in New York for about three years and then went back to China. I opened a...

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Why Every Creative Entrepreneur Needs a Business Mentor

DOUBT is a natural feature of the human mind, coded into our psyche since the dawn of time to help us survive as a species. But it’s also the #1 stumbling block for an entrepreneur and/or artist who wants to build a business and career around their art.

That urge to double, triple, and quadruple check our safety in any given moment was INVALUABLE back in the paleolithic period - so we could avoid stepping on a venomous snake that looked like a root, or poisoning ourselves by eating the wrong kind of berry... 

...but that instinct hasn’t evolved to match our current conditions, and the types of stressors we deal with in the modern world. 

Playing the "mental game" as a creative entrepreneur

As creative entrepreneurs, when left to our own devices, we can become our own worst enemy when it comes to making smart business decisions… and sticking to those decisions.

See, it’s not hard to come up with a business plan on your own.

With the...

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5 Tips for Designers Launching Mission-Driven Businesses

FFORA Founder Lucy Jones on how to build purpose into your mission-driven business, find mentors, work with investors, and protect your work.

Lucy Jones didn’t set out to have a career in fashion. “When I was younger, I thought it was just a hobby,” she says. After a textiles class opened her eyes to the possibilities, Jones enrolled in the Parsons BFA Fashion Design program and established her path. Her thesis project, Seated Design, which focused on clothing for the seated body, specifically people who use wheelchairs, won her the 2015 Womenswear Designer of the Year award and landed her on the 2016 Forbes 30 Under 30 list.

Since then, Jones has solidified her passion for creating clothing and accessories for people who have disabilities. In 2019, after an educational fellowship with Eileen Fisher and a stint at the XRC Labs accelerator program to focus her idea, she took a leap of faith to launch FFORA (a play on the phrase “fashion for all”), a line...

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