TXADPR had the pleasure of speaking with Sam Hoffman and Jojo Kim, the creators of Meeting Masterpieces. Designed to support artists, Meeting Masterpieces offers a place for artists around the world to submit their creations that can then be purchased and used as Zoom backgrounds. Visit the website at https://meetingmasterpieces.com/
Sam and Jojo began their journey at the University of Texas, both majoring in advertising. Sam, the copywriter, and Jojo the art director, now work as partners at Co:collective.
How did Meeting Masterpieces transpire?
Jojo: This stemmed from a callout within our company asking for small projects that spark joy during this time. Initially, we noticed a few brands creating Zoom backgrounds. Given that everyone is having virtual meetings now, and considering we have a lot of artistic friends who are struggling during these times, we thought it would be smart to put the two together.
Sam: We initially began by reaching out to artists we know as well as Instagram accounts that we admire, which led to people from other cities participating. Thanks to social [media], we now have artists from 4 continents. We have seen submissions from India, Australia, Canada, as well as many different cities across America. We also recently partnered with Can't Stop Columbus, a city wide organization designed to support different industries in Columbus, Ohio. Our goal is to share the site throughout their entire artist community with the hopes of them reaching out to other artist communities in the different cities. Then we're going to organize and structure it by city so that you can find and support local artists. They are in the process of developing some backend additions to our website like search functionalities and direct pay structures.
How does it work?
Jojo: The artists have a suggested payment amount per image ranging from $1-$5. A lot of them have come forward and created original pieces for this. You simply go to the shite meetingmasterpieces.com, download the image you want, and pay the artist directly.
How does someone submit their own art?
Sam: We have a submission form on our website; on the left hand side you will see a submit form. You can either take a preexisting piece you have created or make something entirely new. But either way, it is through a very simple form at no cost.
Any last comments you would like people to be aware of?
Sam: During this time it is important that, if you have a few extra bucks, you share those few extra bucks. It is easy for us to feel powerless right now in different ways and I think what we like a lot about Meeting Masterpieces is that we are not asking people to make a $500 donation to a large organization. We are really just asking anyone who may have $5 to spare to directly help someone else who could use it right now. It's very grassroots and it supports artists and brings joy because you're not only letting someone know that you like their art, but you're also then bringing that art to your Zoom meeting. So the art then becomes a conversation piece that people can talk about which futher spreads that artists' name and work to all the people you're Zooming with.
Jojo: What started as an internal initiative to spark joy has really grown into something global, which is inspiring. It has been a really rewarding project to work on and we've gotten the chance to collaborate with artists of all mediums. My favorite part has been seeing people connect and support one another from all over the world and across various industries during a time where we must be physically distant.
We at TXADPR are glad Sam and Jojo shared their story and insight. Their creativity is making online meetings more enjoyable and, better yet, helping others.