So if you've read any of my past personal type journals, of which I've tried not to write too many, you'll know that I've been in a pretty rough spot for a long while. I've got myself pretty decently dug into a hole of plush owed from having to move around a good few times, and I seem to regularly have trouble getting expenses paid while supporting my mother and little brother. Things beyond my control shoved me and my family down, and I've tried my best to get back up on shaky legs. But I haven't had any luck. Friends keep telling me that I could use some help, but they just don't know how they can help me. Some have suggested I take donations through paypal, or to try try again for government aid, or to just give up on the plush for a bit and find work elsewhere or go back to college to study nursing and/or physical therapy. I've never wanted to just ask for money, because I've always believed in earning what I get, and I don't want to give up DBSA to work at walmart or something, because that's all I seem qualified to do having dropped out of college. And I definitely can't afford going back to college right now.
When I was very young, the first song I can remember being my definitive favorite was "Lean On Me" by Bill Withers. My mother worked so hard to get me and my brother a home and we did what we could to help her. Many times when people saw how hard that single mother pushed herself and how her children were giving their all for what it was worth, they felt compelled to help us out in little and big ways. The kindness of strangers always amazed me and made me believe that there was still so much good in the world even though I'd seen so much bad. And now I'm in a position where it's my turn to provide a home for my family. And I'm not doing too hot. I'm doing my best, but that's proving to not be good enough. Maybe I've become too jaded over the past few years and didn't think anyone would help, or maybe I've just not been able to swallow my pride until now. But here I am, contemplating how to best ask for help from all of you who've helped encourage me to pursue my artistic ambitions. I'm only still getting by now because of all the wonderful things y'all have said, and all of the wonderful people I've had the pleasure of working for so far. So here goes nothing...
...How about something like Patreon? Something that would let me let others help me, but I'd be giving back too. I've been thinking a lot lately about that sort of thing, and I don't know. Would any of you like for me to open up a Patreon page? Would anyone be my patrons? I've been thinking a lot about goals I'd aim for and rewards to offer. After so-and-so funding, maybe I'd make my plushing tutorial video I'm working on into a series, where I'd make various plushies on camera and offer downloadable patterns. If anyone would be interested I could maybe get back into making cosplays and/or attend conventions again. You could vote on the next build and maybe I could even tailor and give away some of the costumes and such I make to high donating patrons. For rewards, I could start with maybe stickers and embroidered patches, drawings too (because I'm not just a plush artist), and maybe for a bit more small plushies. I could use some ideas for rewards, so suggest some below if you've got any! I don't want to ask for handouts, just a hand up. I'd love to create more. I have... so many ideas, but I can't afford the time towards any of them as I can barely afford to keep plushing ponies. This might let me do all the neat things I wish I could get paid to do, and show you all how I do it. FNaF suits, pony fursuit type things, Sonic plushies, Dragon Ball plushies, more Transformer/mech cosplays, that Double Backstitch ask tumblr comic I've always wanted to start- maybe that could all happen! Or maybe not. It wouldn't have to be a permanent thing even, if no one is interested in those lofty cosplay and plush vid series goals. Once I'm out of this hole and back on my feet, I'm confident I'd be able to stand steady again.
Would Patreon even be the thing to go to for that? I really don't know. If anyone wants to suggest anything, please do. I'm at my wit's end, and have been for a long while. Talk to me. Give your opinions. Let me know if you'd even consider any of my ideas worth supporting. I need help, and I can't keep slapping temporary fixes like "just work harder and sell more plushies" on my problems because that's got its own limits too. Thank you for giving this a read, and as always your feedback is crucial. I look forward to discussion in the comments, or by note!