Creating an artistic project as an independent artist might be very difficult, especially when it comes to things that cannot be made by ourselves. Even if you are the most independent artist, you will always need someone that helps you develop certain aspects of your project. For example, a carpenter who creates a structure for a sculpture, a musician that composes music for a video, a designer that helps you with your portfolio, an architect that designs your home studio, a marketing expert that helps you with the social media campaigns and content, or even a producer that helps you create and lead a fundraising campaign.

Any job you need done is part of creating your team. From technical work to professional services, every person is part of your team, and selecting them is a crucial aspect of creative production.

Therefore, the first thing you must do is create a plan where you define which roles you need help with, who can carry them out, for how long, and what budget you have for each. A simple map is the easiest way to do that. To make this map, list every activity you need help with, then assign a role to each one, and finally give each role a time to complete each activity and a budget. With this information you might create a team map where you graph all the people that will work in your project, you will also have a list of activities you need help with and even a simple schedule that everyone can follow.

At the end of the article, we will explain an example for a real movie called Sacred Water.

When you have this list and map ready, you will have to look for the people with the appropriate skills and profiles. Usually, we tend to look for them among our acquaintances like friends, coworkers or old peers from school. However, they not always have the correct profiles, so sometimes you end up teaming with the wrong person or even damaging friendships you don’t really want to harm. Mavity offers you an easy alternative where you can connect with other creatives and build up your team, without hiring people for fixed periods of time, and where you can just look them through the profiles you defined in your map.

Here we explain this process for the production of an independent documentary transmedia film. The movie was recorded in the highlands of Colombia near Bogotá, so it had the need of a team of experts that could work in difficult environments. It was also planned as a transmedia project which distributed a book, a music record, a web series and a short film, so the producers had to look for experts in other areas such as design, printing, photography edition and music production amongst others.

Once the two main producers listed all the activities, they defined what kind of creatives they should look for to finish their project according to their plans. They also enlisted activities where other companies would be involved, so they could create their own network to distribute their project. This is the map that ended up from this exercise.

Sacred Waters map (3 producers)
  1. The first circle shows the project, which was produced by one small production company led by three producers.
  2. The second circle is incomplete but shows the projects that needed part of the budget; this second line of circles explains which products were made and what roles were used for each one.
  3. Finally, the circles outside the map show the companies that they had to look for to complete their distribution scheme.

The three producers designed the whole transmedia map, including taglines, scripts, storyboards and articles, but they had to look for experts in movie and nature photography, sound design, printing design, and postproduction and assign them a role in each of the products they produced. To save cash, they decided to give a large part of the team a double role so that way the map shows the role, but not the person, so some people had different roles in different products.

For example, for the movie the producers acted as directors, in the book they worked as writers and photographers, and one of them coordinated the record; in the other hand, the photo department of the film also took photographs for the book, and finally the post-production department was in charge of the web series and the short film. This made them write specific profiles for each role, so that looking for them would become an easier task and the description for each one would be efficient in the Mavity platform.

Finally, they defined the activities that other companies should do, so that way they also created a network that helped them distribute their film according to their plans. You can read about how to create creative networks in our next article.

Want to build a team of audiovisual creatives? Start a project today on Mavity.