5fa17b9cb9d999c2c82181af3358733a_originalI blogged Friday about New York photographer Bill Bytsura’s fundraiser for his book featuring 45 photographs and personal narratives of AIDS activists from around the world.

I reached out to Bytsura about the project’s status. He successfully raised the $35,500 necessary to produce The AIDS Activist Project: Portraits & Stories 1989-1998.

For someone who had been working on the project for three decades and been at the forefront of the AIDS crisis as it struck, it should be no surprise the final hours of fundraising were “intense” for Bytsura.

“Saturday…was intense. I woke up at 5 a.m. in a full on panic and went right to Kickstarter [the fundraising platform], then realized no one would be awake yet. I posted a ‘Back this project now’ on [social media] and waited … and waited, then a few new backers donated. Then a few people shared the post with messages asking friends to donate, then more donations came in and the campaign really took off,” Bytsura wrote in an e-mail.

Small donations especially made a difference.

“We had a lot of $1, $5 $10 donations and it all added up to an amazing success. I was totally blown away by all the support the project received. But I am so happy that this project will finally be competed as it was originally intended.”

With funding in place, “the creative process begins.” With a scheduled release date of Sept. 2016 Bytsura and his team now has to attend to the production process.

“Editing, layout, this is when it will all come together in what I hope will be a worthy document to the men, women and a movement that changed the course of AIDS.”