West Virginia is working toward growing its creative economy with input from entrepreneurs.
On June 2, the nonprofit economic development organization Tamarack Foundation for the Arts reported the results of a survey it conducted last fall, said Executive Director Alissa Novoselick.
The West Virginia Artist Entrepreneur Study got 500 responses from visual, performing, literary and other types of creatives in 48 counties, telling what it really is like to be a professional creative entrepreneur in West Virginia.
With the data, Novoselick said, “We can continue to push and grow this piece of our economy. This study validates that the creative economy in West Virginia is a viable sector with significant potential for growth…”
The survey results, available at tamarackfoundation.org/wv-creative-entrepreneur-study, tell who the respondents are, how they see their sector of the economy and what they want to help them be successful. The Tamarack Foundation has already started initiatives that address some of the data points.
One in three respondents make their primary living from their work, and one in five make more than $15,000 a year.
What’s more, demographics show these creative entrepreneurs don’t fit the stereotype of a typical entrepreneur in the Mountain State, which is female, older, working in a traditional craft and thought of as a hobbyist, not an entrepreneur, Novoselick said.
Four in 10 of survey respondents were male, younger than age 44, and the vast majority were fine artists, such as painters…