Q&A with Creative Action Network co-founder Max Slavkin

Jannelle Garcia

429481_10100687588129705_1060506645_nMax Slavkin, twenty-seven and an LA native, is the co-founder of the small startup Creative Action Network.

The startup is a website that runs a crowdsourced campaign and sells prints, apparel, and other goods that promote a cause. All the merchandise is created by artists around the country who want to contribute to a movement: preserving the environment, protesting against gun laws, or any cause that that will enhance and better our world.

Slavkin, and his business partner and childhood friend, Aaron Perry-Zucker, formed the idea for Creative Action Network, while working on a design project in 2008 for President Obama’s election campaign. After witnessing how many artists were willing and excited to create art for a cause, Slavkin and Perry-Zucker

The startup officially launched in January 2013, and has had more than ten thousand artists contribute art to a campaign.

Slavkin says the business averages two-hundred and fifty new artists a month. Slavkin and Perry-Zucker raised and invested the funds to start the business through campaign consulting.

Wanting to correct any kinks or errors in the business before launching, Slavkin and Perry-Zucker applied to Matter., a San Francisco startup incubator, and participated in a five month program with six other startup teams, that workshopped, refined and improved the future startup plans and businesses.  Once the program ended, Matter. gave Slavskin and Perry-Zucker a $50,000 investment.

Slavkin says the prospect of creating revenue to keep the business running in 2014 is still unclear.

“We might or might not raise money in January,” Slavkin says.

In his interview, Slavkin talks about and what it’s like to run a startup in the heart of SF, the tradeoffs that come with manning your own business, and the successes that keep him going.

*In a previous version of this article, we introduced Slavkin as Matt, not Max. XPress Magazine would like to apologize for this error.