Monica Davidson is an award-winning expert on the creative industries, who has infamously never had a ‘proper job’. She began her creative life as a freelance journalist and filmmaker before starting a production company in the early 1990s. Her experience highlighted how unprepared creative people can be for a life of entrepreneurship. As she learned the basics, Monica started offering informal advice and running workshops to help other creatives with their freelance work. As her expertise grew she continued to work with creative practitioners, and more than 25 years later Monica is a renowned and award-winning expert in the fields of freelancing, creative industries and arts entrepreneurship. Through her social enterprise Creative Plus Business Group, Monica helps creatives at all stages of their careers to improve their business skills.
Monica runs workshops and masterclasses, delivers keynotes and webinars, and regularly provides her expertise to panel discussions and the media. She is a guest lecturer on creative entrepreneurialism at tertiary institutions including AFTRS and NIDA. Creative Plus Business Group also consults to larger arts organisations, and the team have created arts business training, professional development and mentoring programs for councils, government agencies, business support organisations and industry peak bodies. The Creative Plus Business programs focus on goal setting, business and strategic planning, financial literacy, understanding markets – and having fun.
Monica was appointed as the first Creative Industries Business Advisor by the NSW Office of Small Business in 2013, and the following year completed her Masters in Screen Arts and Business at the Australian Film Television and Radio School. Monica was named as one of the Westpac/Australian Financial Review 100 Women of Influence for her work in the creative industries in 2014, and in 2018 she was a finalist in the Sydney Business Chamber Awards for Outstanding Leadership. In 2019 Monica was awarded the inaugural Creative Trailblazer Award at the QUT Creative Enterprise Australia awards, recognition for “an individual who creates enterprises and opportunities and who advocates, mentors, donates, educates and advises within Australia’s creative economy.”
Monica is an accomplished writer, and contributes regularly to online journals about creative business. She wrote the Australian version of Freelancing for Dummies in 2008, and has just completed the first in a series of twelve new creative business books.
Monica continues to juggle her creative practice with her business. She enjoys movies (making them and watching them), spending time with her boisterous family of creative practitioners, spending time with her elderly dog, drinking pink champagne, and indulging in the gentle art of karaoke.