The U.S. crowd-funding website Kickstarter is now said to distribute more money to creatives per year than the NEA (the USA’s equivalent of the Arts Council), and without the intervening clutter. There are now better chances of success on Kickstarter than applying for NEA grants. Kickstarter funded three times more projects than the NEA in 2011. It did so across a wider range of creative practice, and with far less staff.

Sadly, Kickstarter is not currently available in the U.K. (it’s due here in the Autumn of 2012, hopefully integrated in such as way as to expose UK users to the huge USA pool of investors), but IndieGoGo is the popular Brit-friendly alternative. IndieGoGo lets you keep the donations you raise, even if you don’t raise all of your target amount.