You may heard widely spread opinion that physically disabled person isn't able of reasonable work or his/her products are in poor quality and can be sold only in charities.
Our company Good Sailors was founded in 2002 and we were primaly focused on application development, creating web pages and providing technical support. After a while we wanted a significant change. Change that could open an opportunity window for us, change that could move us forward and give us new options and chalenges.
First important milestone was in 2006 when we gained “workplace with sheltered occupations” status. We began employing physically and emotionally handicapped people. It took couple years to establish a stable team. We had discovered few enthusiastic and craft skilled people, we bet on them and it works well.
Crucial Year 2015
Year 2015 became crucial year to us when we unveiled world of desktop fantasy games. We tried to make terrains but it just didn't work well for various reasons like funding, cooperations with other firms and so on. It was real disappointment but it didn't let us down so much to stop us.
We took another chance when we began working with professional Prague miniature painter but other obstacles revealed.
- First - we had to professionally train our beginning painters.
- Second - we needed to equip our painting studio. We faced a huge investment.
We set our priorities straight and main priority was to equip actual painting studio. Our Prague colleague put together a list of basic things needed for our own start, he also suggested the design of our future painting studio.We needed to buy shelves, lights, boards, chairs and tables. When deliveries started coming in bulk we all had to buckle down and work overtime and as the time shows it was worth it.
Next step on our schedule was to get work aids. We were surprised by the length of the list of needed aids. Eventually we did it. Various types of brushes, paints and templates began appearing in our Studio as well as special lamps with magnifying glasses, compressor and airbrush. We were happy with all the useful equipment but one thing was missing. We did not know how to paint.
We contacted our mentor and consulted all the options and aspects of the training. He was training us himself for almost three months for an adequate cost. After a while we decided to use grants support for our Studio.
We googled how to get a grant, grant for disabled people so we managed the claims and all the paperwork and opened new painting Studio.
Everything was ready
Between the April and May (2015) was benchmark time for all our painters. They started from scratch and they had to learn many techniques in relatively short period of time. They spent hours and hours painting miniatures and continued at homes too. After two months, they were proud of their attendance of the course and brand new certificates. Since we've been able to work individually, logical step was to start publicizing the Studio Project for our potential clients.
We created beautifully looking and stylish web pages containing photo gallery of our work and started campaign on social networks like FB, Twitter, G+. Almost everything is oriented to abroad.
First few small commissions were for local clients, but we worked our way through to abroad customers. Our clients from abroad are more demanding and they expect assemble and paint armies containing hundreds of miniatures in high quality. Those miniatures are used in international competitions and tournaments. The project is fully developed and established nowadays. We mainly focus on miniatures of well known wargame Warhammer 40k.
Well we don't refuse other challenges either. We provide professional assemble of whole armies, conversions or we can paint individual miniatures complying with clients preferences and wishes. Currently we are working on other changes for the future too, but we do not want to spoil the surprise.