2019 Is The Year Of Purple Nose Productions

2019 Is The Year Of Purple Nose Productions

The scariest part of achieving your dreams is taking the first step. A young up and coming production company working out of Gwinnett County, Ga are going to blow your minds this year.

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Upon arriving in West, I met the single most amazing human being I could have crossed paths with. One of the first things she ever told me in what would become our regular walks across campus was "Oh yeah, I have a TV show." This 18-year-old home-schooled dork had written, directed and filmed a whole TV show and said it like it was some casual fact. A year and a half later, Andrea opened up about how scared she was.

"Let me tell you about the scariest day of my life.

To set this scene for you. Picture a warm July evening, and a too tall teenage girl with aggressively sweaty palms wiping them on an evening gown, even though it's 6 pm and way too early for that kind of dress. That's me. I was setting up a projector to play the web series I had taken nearly a year of my life to create, and fifty of my closest family, friends, and actors would see it. We had strung tinsel everywhere and laid out copious amounts of food, and all that was left was to actually show the main event. Support Group.

Support Group started as a script idea. No, it started as a text. Hey, I have an idea, do you wanna read it for me? It turned into something I poured my life into, and it became more than I ever thought that it could. After the months of writing, and casting, and recasting, and filming, and editing, so much editing, I made my first movie. Of course, the unrelenting help of my best friends and family, incredible inspiration from the creators of this world, and a pinch of idiocy helped me out, but at the end of the day I went to bed thinking, 'I made a movie.' There is no better feeling in the world.

Let's catch up with sweaty-palmed Andrea, shall we? She sets up the projector, whispers something to Julia Peake, and it's time to begin rounding people up. This is it, this is the biggest moment of her life up to this point. This is her dream coming true. Years of working has led her here, and she?

She is currently crying in the bathroom. Like, ugly crying. On the floor of an event hall. Because at that moment, everything I had done didn't matter. I didn't care that everyone I knew was ready to cheer for me, or that I did something kids my age would kill to get to do. Because I hadn't washed my hair in days. And my makeup was running, and the decorations were all wrong, and I hated my movie. Who cares how cool it was to make if it's the worst thing I've ever seen.

I want to highlight the scariest part of filmmaking for me. Hating what you're making. You could read this and think, no, I would never make something I don't like because I would only pick good ideas. Throw that one out right now. I made a movie once about a fly stuck in peanut butter.

Trust me, there are really bad ideas. But the fear comes in when you've found something good to write about, and you spend all day, and then you have to show your partner. That fear of disappointing someone creeps up and points out every flaw in your work. When you are in the middle of a shoot and one thing goes wrong and it feels like nothing is working, so why should we even try? I can tell you why.

To this day, I don't like to show people Support Group. But I do. I showed my roommates, and my teachers, and 1000 people who saw it online. And I'm petrified every time that I do. When you create something, you do not draw it out of thin air, it comes from inside of you. Which means, showing someone something you made is the same as showing them a piece of your brain. It's personal and scary. They might not like it.

And then, what happens when you don't like that piece? When your own body and soul turn on you, and you see every flaw. In the first episode of Support Group, there's a cut in the middle of a shot where everyone moves slightly to the right. Episode two has my reflection from behind the camera in the window. Every time I see these problems I am so ashamed that I made something terrible, but in episode four the cuts during a conversation are so smooth I forget I'm seeing them. And the diner is absolutely beautiful in episode two.

We forget, as creators, that we are people. That people make mistakes, and that is what makes the best moments. My favorite part of any movie is the blooper reel, and Support Group is just the same. We can fight for perfection until we are blue in the face and the blood runs dry, but the creations we leave along the way are not disregarded rags, they are stepping stones. They should be respected as the only reason we are here now.

So, when you make that movie, where your backyard is a set and your mom has to fill in, do not be ashamed that you didn't plan better. Be grateful that you are smart enough to find a solution, and didn't give up before you had a shot. Learn from what you ruin and write down when you lose your balance because trust me, you will. Treasure every single mistake, because one day, when I am holding an Oscar in my hand, all I will be able to say is, "Thank you for being my Support Group."

If this has shown me anything, it has fully displayed Purple Nose's, and Andrea's stand alone, love, passion, and understanding of the film industry and her projects is astonishing. There is not a member of this team that is older than 20. Here's Purple Nose's site. The Facebook page here. Check em out on the gram, too.

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8 Things You Need To Know About Selling On Redbubble

Everyone buys their stickers from Redbubble, but have you ever wanted to be the one making them?
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As someone who loves to fool around in Photoshop and Illustrator, I saw Redbubble as a chance to flex my skills as a graphic designer. The massive popularity of them provided me with an opportunity to make a little money on the side doing something I not only enjoyed but could do when the mood struck me. It seemed like a win-win, but there were a few things I wish I knew before I started making stickers.

1. Don't expect to be rolling in dough.

It took a month and maybe 10 different designs before I sold any of my stickers. I joined in October of 2017, and I have sold about 20 stickers.

2. Redbubble stickers are expensive for a reason.

At this point, I have sold about 20 stickers which may seem like a lot, until you find out how much I make per sticker. The artist sets how much they make after Redbubble’s share, so artists can set it as low as 0% profit (which means the sticker sells for $2.29).

3. Buying 10 and getting 50% off is great when you're the one buying the stickers...

...but it sucks when you’re the one selling them. I make an average of 20% per sticker, so when you buy my $2.75 sticker for $1.38, I only make 23¢.

4. Make things you would buy.

If there’s something you want to buy, but it doesn’t exist, make it. Keep in mind as well that if you wouldn't buy it, odds are that not too many other people would.

5. Try to offer variations.

You might make a design in blue and love it, but consider offering it in different colors. Someone might love the design but hate the color.

6. Make your designs as versatile as possible.

Redbubble is primarily known for its stickers, but your designs can be put on anything from a poster to a wall clock. Take advantage of that because more expensive items mean you make more for the same design when they sell.

7. Keywords are KEY.

You want your designs to be as visible as possible, so take advantage of all the tools they give you. Try to tag your design with anything that might relate to it; you want it to pop up in as many tags as possible.

8. Do your research.

If you are interested in making something, search one of the keywords and see how many results there are for it. Sometimes there is a need, and you can fill it.

I have enjoyed my time on Redbubble nonetheless, and I recommend it to anyone who likes to design or draw. It’s certainly not a good way to get rich quick, but I enjoy it. Every time someone purchases one of my stickers, I feel this rush of pride in knowing someone liked something that I designed. That's a big reason why I continue to put designs on Redbubble.



Cover Image Credit: Meagan McDowell

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11 Financial Tips For College Grads Who Don't Know Where To Start

Most people learn how to navigate their finances as they go, at the cost of making several mistakes and starting good habits later than they should've. Don't be like most people!

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Adulting is hard, especially when it comes to money. If you're like me and you took a personal finance class in high school or college, you probably don't remember much because the information wasn't relevant to you at the time. Well, now you're almost done with college and you're ready to be welcomed into the real world as a freshly-minted adult. Suddenly you realize that class was probably one of the most important classes you ever could've taken.

Here are 11 tips to start making money moves today.

1. Start building your credit

It may not seem important now, but it's a good idea to start building your credit early. In three to five years or so, when you're ready to apply for a car or home loan, you're going to want to be approved to get the best interest rates, and that means having a credit score of at least 760. See tips two and three for more on how to increase your credit score.

2. Open a credit card if you don't have one already

One huge factor in your credit score is how long your oldest credit card account has been open, so you want to make sure to start early. A first card many people get is called a "secured" credit card, which basically acts like a debit card so the bank knows you won't go all "Shopaholic" and max it out. Make sure to pay every single one of your monthly payments on time and in full. No excuses, no exceptions.

3. Make all of your student loan payments on time and in full

JUST DO IT.

4. Embrace the concept of paying yourself first

Paying yourself first is a concept that many millionaires, even billionaires, swear by. Decide how much of your income you want to save. Then set up a portion of your paycheck to deposit directly into your savings before you can even think about it. The rest can go to your checking account for spending on bills, food, rent, and other expenses.

5. Build a three- to six-month emergency fund

Did you know that 33% of Americans would struggle to pay $1,000 in an emergency? This is a serious issue. You don't want to ever experience living "paycheck to paycheck," let alone have a minor crisis throw your life upside down. That's why you're going to build this emergency fund before you do anything else with your money. Think of this fund as something that you can't touch until you absolutely need it. If and when that time comes, you'll know, and you'll be so grateful that you were smart and were prepared.

6. Open a Roth IRA

There are so many things to be said about Roth IRAs and why you should get one as a new college graduate. In short, IRA stands for Individual Retirement Account. A Roth IRA is unique because any money you put into it is taxed now, so you won't have to pay taxes on it when you're retired and ready to use it. The main benefit: you also won't have to pay any taxes on the money you earn in the account. In addition, because you're young, you get to take advantage of the power of compound interest for a long time before you retire. This could potentially earn you hundreds of thousands of dollars. The best time to open a Roth IRA was yesterday. So go do it now!

7. Contribute as much as possible to your 401k

A 401k is basically an investment bank account that you can't use until you retire, and it will be taxed once you start using it (so it is not taxed now). Many employers offer 401k matching, and they open one up for you when you start your first job. If your employer offers 100% matching up to 6% of your salary, that means that if you can afford to put 6% of your income into your 401k, your employer will also contribute the exact same amount. Listen to me: this is free money. I like free money. You like free money. Take it.

8. Open a high-yield savings account

This is 2019. Don't keep your money in cash or in a regular savings account, where it'll depreciate 2-3% in value every single year it sits there. Get yourself a high-yield savings account, in which interest rates are anywhere between 2.0 and 2.25%, and watch your money make money while you sleep.

9. Start tracking your spending

Since it has become much easier to make quick and painless purchases these days, you should definitely be aware of your spending. I personally like to use a free app, like Mint, that does all the work for you because it puts all of your financial accounts (ie. savings and checking accounts, investments, loans, assets, etc.) into one place.

10. Create a monthly budget for each of your spending categories

These include food, housing, transportation, entertainment, subscriptions, health and wellness, and maybe more. You should know the things you always buy on a monthly basis and how much they typically cost. Comparing your budget to what you really spent after a month will show you exactly where your weaknesses are. Try to stay at or under your budget for each category every month unless there's an unusual event, like a vacation or a car repair.

11. Learn the basics of investing

Compared to the other tips on this list, this is one you can put on the back-burner for a bit. However, that doesn't make it any less important. It's critical for everyone who is financially independent to understand the basics of stocks, bonds, Exchange-Traded Funds, Mutual Funds, REITs, and more that you can use to diversify your portfolio, including in your new Roth IRA and 401k!

What are you waiting for? Up your financial game!

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