Running Your Own Creative Business

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Creative practice needs business skills to reduce the chances of it becoming an expensive hobby. If being successful and making money is the plan, then most creatives need some help and guidance with the business aspects of what they do. This fast, fun and comprehensive workshop offers just that. Facilitated by creative industries expert Monica Davidson, this course includes everything you need to know about working for yourself in the arts. It is especially relevant to freelancers.


  • Setting goals and planning strategically for your career and business;
  • Managing money, including the 'famine and feast' of irregular income;
  • Working out what to charge, and how to value you work;
  • Tax, including defining your business, income tax, GST and deductions;
  • Legal issues of contracts and pitching;
  • Understanding how to make money from intellectual property;
  • Marketing your creative business to paying clients.
Although as creatives we often prefer to concentrate on creative output, financial viability and success relies on our ability to navigate the business arena! Running at AFTRS for over ten years, "Creative Business" has helped hundreds of participants to develop and grow their creative careers and make money from their practice. Filmmakers, writers, designer, performers, musicians and more - all are welcome! STUDENT FEEDBACK
'This course should be essential for any freelancer in the creative industries!
Monica was brilliant this weekend and I've certainly been enlightened in looking to run my creative business in the future. I will definitely be recommending it to other creative friends.
The course was absolutely fantastic and Monica is a fabulous teacher. I gained a huge amount from the course...highly recommended and extremely happy.
Monica is awesome! So knowledgeable & fun! Facilities were great. The material received had extreme value!'
Monica Davidson is an award-winning expert on the creative industries, who began her creative life as a freelance journalist and filmmaker before starting a film production company in the early 90s. Her experience highlighted how desperately unprepared creative people can be for a life of entrepreneurship. Monica decided to use her expertise to help other creative practitioners develop and improve their business skills, and now she works with individual practitioners and larger organisations as a business advisor, strategic consultant and workshop facilitator. She focuses on goal setting, business and strategic planning, financial literacy and understanding markets. Monica is a regular guest lecturer at institutions including AFTRS, NIDA, NAVA and Ausdance, and she is the author of the Australian version of Freelancing for Dummies. In 2013 Monica was appointed as the first NSW Creative Industries Business Advisor through SmallBizConnect, and the following year she completed her Masters Degree in Screen Business at AFTRS. In 2015 Monica was named as one of the Westpac 100 Women of Influence for her work in the creative industries. Her award-winning company Creative Plus Business Group recently joined the City of Sydney Creative Spaces project, and in 2017 Monica and the team were proud to join the NSW Department of Industry Business Connect program as creative industries specialists.

 Check out Monica Davidson: Top Tips for Running Your Own Creative Business​ on our Meet the Tutors page.

Have any questions? Please get in touch: or 1300 065 281

***DISCLAIMER*** AFTRS reserves the right to cancel any course for any reason at any time. In the event of a course being cancelled a full refund of course fees will be provided. If a participant wishes to withdraw from a course, they may do so up to 15 days before the course commences and get a full refund. Cancellations 14 days or less before course commencement will incur a fee. For more information on AFTRS Open's policies, including refund policies, please see our

Policies page​


The Australian Film Television Radio and School would like to acknowledge the Traditional Owners, the Bidjigal people and Gadigal people of the Eora Nation, on whose land we meet, work, study and teach. We pay our respects to Elders past and present, and extend our respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people from all nations of this land.