Our guide to hosting online events and tutorials
Whether you’re a museum, gallery, library, pottery studio, makerspace or a volunteer-led craft club, we want you to stay connected with your audience during COVID-19. There are lots of easy ways you can stream workshops live via social media, so we’ve put this useful resource together to help get you started. This guide is also available to download as a PDF.
Tips for livestreaming your craft:
- Try watching a few examples of online craft tutorials to see how other makers have done theirs – think about your craft and your audience. Showing how to throw a pot and a children’s weaving workshop will need very different set ups!
- Choose the right location; ensure your space is well lit and you have enough room to do your activity.
- A good internet connection is vital so be sure you are in range of your Wi-Fi router and have a strong signal.
- Use a tripod if possible, or a makeshift one!
- If you are using a laptop or computer, make sure it’s fully charged or plugged in.
- Do a test run so you can get a good feel for timings, the activity and what materials you might need. Try doing a test broadcast with a friend in advance to check that your audio and camera are working properly.
- Promote your live event on social media so your followers know when it is happening and what materials they will need. Promote to your own followers, but also look for other craft groups to share it with—and don’t forget the Crafts Council’s Everyday Making group on Facebook.
- Show the materials and tools people will need at the start and consider listing them in the text you use to promote the event.
- Be consistent. If you are going to do a regular live stream workshop, try to stick to the same time and day.
- Avoid using music during your session to avoid copyright complications.
- If you have someone in your household who can assist off-camera, they can read you any comments from your live stream.
- Go for it! Live streams don’t have to be perfect, so don’t worry if you have a few hiccups. The main thing is that people are able to connect with you, learn from what you’re doing, and have fun.
- Be sure to tag the Crafts Council in your post and use the hashtags #EverydayMaking #GetCreativeAtHome.
- Upload your video afterwards so that people who missed your live broadcast can take part too.
Facebook Live is really user-friendly and a great way to reach your existing audience. It’s instant and interactive, giving viewers the chance to comment and ask questions while crafting along at home.
How to go live on Facebook:
- Log in to your Facebook homepage.
- Go to create a post and press the Live Video option.
- When the Live page has opened, add a video title and description so people know what you will be making.
- Click on the Go Live button to get started!
- When you are running your session, be sure to check out who is watching and respond to any questions your viewers ask.
Please note: This may look slightly different depending on what device you are using.
This video-conferencing app has become hugely popular among colleagues, friends and family since people have been encouraged to stay at home. Fitness instructors, musicians and many other professionals are using Zoom to keep people active during COVID-19, so we think it’s a great way to get people making at home. With Zoom you can control who accesses your workshop by inviting people directly, so it’s good for setting up a session for a particular group of people.
How to go live on Zoom:
- In your internet browser head to Zoom.us and create an account. It’s free to do and allows you to host 40 minute video calls with up to 100 participants.
- Click on My Account in the top right corner.
- Click Schedule a Meeting, then pick the date and time of your online session.
- Copy and paste the URL and send it to whoever you want to invite giving them the time and date of the event and at the bottom of the screen click Save.
- On the next page take note of the meeting URL and password and share this with who you would like to invite.
- When it’s time to host your event, log back in to Zoom, click on My Account and then click on Meetings.
- It will show your scheduled meetings, find the right meeting then click Start. Then in the new window, click Open Zoom.
- If you think you will need more than 40 minutes, you could schedule another meeting for afterwards, just be sure to share the URL and password for this meeting beforehand.
Please note: Some people are not using Zoom for security reasons. We strongly recommend using a password when setting up an event to ensure safe online space for you and your participants. Take a look at Zoom’s blogpost about how you can keep uninvited guests out of your event.
There are lots of other ways you can provide video content for your followers. You could try uploading your videos to YouTube, Vimeo or Instagram TV (IGTV). Be sure to promote these by sharing the URL via your usual social media platforms.
Here are some other helpful resources:
• How to create an engaging IGTV channel
• Facebook Live Video: The Complete Guide
• Zoom support during COVID-19
• Those of you wanting to take this to the next level might want to check out Yomodo, who have a new course that gives step-by-step guidance on planning an online course
The Get Creative Festival is a campaign to celebrate and support the everyday creativity happening in homes and public spaces. This year due to COVID-19 Get Creative is turning its focus to online workshops, encouraging venues and creative practitioners to live stream their sessions instead. If you’re planning an online event and want to reach new audiences, why not submit your live stream event to their website and join the #GetCreativeAtHome campaign.