VLA offers a variety of programs and workshops, which are listed below. We also offer a selection of on-demand, online recordings of previously held education programs for those unable to attend or want a refresher. Click here to access and view these presentations.

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Being your Brand: Entrepreneurship for Artists

February 12, 2019 @ 5:30 pm - 7:00 pm


When it comes to being an independent artist, you likely received no training on how to be a small business owner. Yet the reality is that you are the CEO of your own brand – as the CEO, you have to make all of the important business decisions. You live with the consequences of those choices, but there are tools available to help you succeed.

This workshop aims to help artists of all disciplines learn the practical skills needed to run an art business.

Topics Include:

Common contract clauses and their pitfalls, and important issues for creatives including ownership rights, credits, milestone management, copyright protection, control, legal liability, and planning for the unexpected.

We will use contracts as a focal point to show you what to do in these two common scenarios: 1) you’re handed a contract to sign that you don’t understand, and 2) you are working with others and need to clarify and set the basic framework for the collaboration.

Who this workshop is for:

Whether you are a musician, writer, performing artist, visual artist, or anyone else in the creative industry, you’ll come away from this workshop better equipped to make a living doing what you love!

Tuesday, February 12, 2019, 5:30 – 7 PM

VLA Auditorium
1 East 53rd Street, NY, NY 10022

$25 Full-Time Student (student must present proof of full-time status with registration)
$25 Artists Over Sixty
$35 Arts Professional VLA Member
$55 Arts Professional Non-Member
$85 Legal Professional VLA Member
$110 Legal Professional Non-Member
$55 Young Associate Members (YAM’s) and Associate Board Members

All registration fees are non-refundable. Please note you are not registered until full payment is received.
For more information on this program, please contact VLA at registrations@vlany.org or 212.319.2787 x 10

About David Williams

A fierce advocate for artists’ rights, David Williams’ passion is empowering emerging artists to embrace the reality that each is the CEO of his own brand.

He is a faculty member at The New School’s Mannes School of Music and the Crane School of Music at SUNY Potsdam. He teaches courses in Entrepreneurial Musicianship, Music Industry Law, and Non-profit Management and is faculty supervisor of the Crane Institute for Music Business’ internship program. He also serves as Executive Director of the Fall Island Vocal Arts Seminar (www.FallIsland.org).

Dr. Williams earned a JD from New York Law School, and degrees in vocal performance from the University of Wisconsin-Madison (DMA), and the New England Conservatory of Music (MM), as well as a BM in Musical Studies from the Crane School of Music.

Having racked up student loan debt sufficient to garner the requisite credibility and having been constantly on the lookout for how to make $1000 fast, in 2015 he left twenty years of corporate work behind to launch his consultancy, Enterprising Artist Consulting (www.EnterprisingArtistConsulting.com).

He writes for Modern Singer Magazine and is the author of The Enterprising Musician’s Guide to Performer Contracts (Rowman & Littlefield, 2017) which explains performers’ contracts in plain language.


February 12, 2019
5:30 pm - 7:00 pm
Event Category:


Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts
(212) 319 - 2787
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VLA Auditorium
1 East 53rd Street
New York, NY 10022 United States
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(212) 319 - 2787
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