an open source architectural beadwork project from Kate McKinnon and a worldwide team of innovators
Hello, beautiful beaders around the world!
It’s time at last for us to begin releasing the radically new work that will fill the upcoming three books. In the next month and year, this blog will be flowing with all of our new technical ideas, solutions, and unbelievable shortcuts for making complex pieces from simple starts.
We’ve solved the questions that we began with, and they were difficult to crack. Each solution is fundamental and will change your beading life. We’ve also made some very complicated and beautiful new things.
The book projects have now crossed the two-year mark, which is a long time, but not unreasonable for the level of work involved (think writing a graduate thesis at University).
As these are intended to be textbooks that can stand alone (and not items in a series that will be continually updated) they must be complete unto themselves. I will not release them until I feel that we have successfully communicated our final ideas. We are very close.
CGB has always been a small project, but as the ideas grew, so did the audience. Even though I only accepted less than a thousand early orders, many people pre-ordered the books not knowing who I was, how the project worked, or how I view work in progress and the obligation to publish correctly. This is a science project, not work for profit, and the ENTIRE PROJECT has been funded by me personally, out of book sales. But book sales do not pay me or anyone else any salary to work.
This means that until the books are published, there is no funding for me at all. The pre-order sales were at half-price, including special items, and the early orders (including foreign orders) included free shipping. The only reason to take pre-orders (since there is no income from them after the expenses of production and shipping) is to provide a small amount of working capital to purchase materials.
So – everyone who has worked on these groundbreaking ideas has worked for free; I have given six years of my life to the project, without the idea of profit. Because of this, I am not particularly sympathetic to complaints that publication is taking longer than expected. Each of the pre-order bundles is a gift from both sides.
The order, when placed, is a gift to the project to allow us to proceed and have materials. The order, when sent, is a gift to the person who ordered it, as the project does not profit from the sale. So there is simply no room for anyone who is impatient to bully or harass the creator. That sort of thing is completely out of bounds, and not in the spirit of the contract.
CGB is open source, another thing that can be difficult to understand for those who don’t work that way. ALL technical information is always free. The only reason to buy the books is to have them (and they are gorgeous). Ideas will be released for free on the blog, here, and on Facebook, and in person when I give talks.
When you are considering funding a Kickstarter, or a book pre-order, or a subscription to anything – know that the only reason to pre-order anything is to enable its creation.
I have personally supported several Kickstarters in the last two years, a beautiful art piece from a roboticist and a sculptor, and a set of geometric folding measuring spoons. Each of them is still to deliver well over a year later; I don’t mind. I know that they are working hard to make them right. I would not pre-order something if I did not trust the creators personally to deliver, and I am not going to disparage them for their timeline of creation.
So: please, I beg of you, don’t send upset emails about how long I am taking to finish, or leave Facebook messages demanding to know exactly what day the books are shipping. Do not think that we are fiddling by the river instead of working. Our team is global, and is essentially working 24 hours a day to refine our discoveries, and we are full of love for the ideas, the work, and we are proud to be bringing you true innovation, true solutions, and genuinely new ideas.
Now. On to the technical updates!
(In the next post)