Live-streaming service launches for artists
James R | On 18, Aug 2015
When it comes to online video, “catch-up” and “binge-view” are the two words you hear all the time, but “live-stream” may be the one where the biggest steps are being taken.
As bandwidths have increasing and technology has improved, watching things live has become a major part of video activity on the web. Amazon’s acquisition of Twitch for almost $1 billion last year indicated how important the live-streaming sector is considered to be, while YouTube is also beefing up its live platform with a dedicated gaming arm. Periscope and Meerkat are now duking it out to become the dominant player in the mobile broadcasting race. Even Facebook has just announced its own live-streaming service for VIP users.
Now, a new contender has entered the arena: Sywork. Rather than focus on games or on-the-move broadcasting. though, Sywork is targeting another area altogether: artists.
Short for “Show Your Work”, the platform allows users to watch artists create their pictures in real- time. Artists signing up to the site get their own profile, while users can be notified when their favourite illustrators are live. A chat window also allows the audience to talk about what’s on-screen. Any recorded videos are then saved to each artist’s channel so people can watch them later.
The site capitalises on a growing trend among artists to show the behind-the-scenes work that goes into their pieces on YouTube and other VOD services.
“We were looking for a place where illustrators could show their process and realized that a lot of artists have the same problem,” one of the founders, Marcelo Echeverria, told Techcrunch. “Artists we talked to were trying to find a place to live stream. They were using google hangouts, paid live streaming platforms or even gaming platforms like Twitch. But there wasn’t a place created specially for them.”
“There are thousands of people who want to watch artists work live. We went to Comic Con this year and saw how passionate people are about their favorite artists,” he added.
So far, around 6,000 people from 115 countries are watching art being created on Sywork in a week, with an average length of 87 minutes per stream.
The site also plans to introduce a subscription system that will allow artists to monetise their live-streaming – a crucial component in establishing a viable VOD platform. As Sywork caters for a niche audience, though, the site’s launch is proof that the burgeoning live-streaming sector is already growing into new, unexpected areas.
Photo taken from sulamoon’s Sywork profile.