Ann Rea created Artists Who TRHIVE based on her inspired business approach, featured on HGTV and the Good Life Project, in Fortune and The Wine Enthusiast magazines, and profiled in the book Career Renegade

Rea’s artistic talent is commended by American art icon, Wayne Thiebaud, and she has a growing list of collectors across North America and Europe.


a talented young girl pursued her dream of being a famous artist by attending a very prestigious and expensive art school. 

For five years she learned how to make art …but not how to money from it.

Then her student loan bill arrived. 

Quickly she realized that she needed to make more money, much more than she needed to make more art.


… she commuted to a grey-base colored corporate cubicle.

But this artless existence drove her into a deeper depression and anxiety that she could not numb.  

Too often she would sit with two work mates bitching about the relentless office politics. 


….she remembered. Both had just entered into remission from Stage IV breast cancer. 

So she stopped and asked them,“If you had a magic wand and you could do anything, and be assured of success, what would you do?”

One said, “I don’t know.”  

The other said, “I’d be an interior designer. But I’m too afraid.” 

Are you afraid living what life you have left to the fullest more than you are of surviving cancer?


…she stopped bitching and she starting painting again.

She sought the counsel of a very famous artist named Wayne Thiebaud, whose paintings were selling for about $1M.

He said, “You know, you should pursue painting full time.”  

“But how will I make money?” She asked.

 “Oh, I don’t know, I’m not a businessman.” He replied.

“The IRS sure thinks you’re businessman.”  She thought. 

Wayne Thiebaud’s glowing letter of recommendation moved art galleries to crack open their doors.

But sometimes they paid her, sometimes they didn’t.  

So although the galleries didn’t allow it, she starting selling her paintings herself.

She studied marketing so she could sell more art and her grey-base colored corporate cubicle imprisoned her less and less.


… she just couldn’t take one more two-hour commute and 12-hour day working for another “team leader” whose nickname was “Snotty Scotty.” 

So she decided to turn her dream of being a full time artist into her reality.

In 2005, she moved to the beach in San Francisco and she wrote a plan to sell over $100K in one year.

This unknown artist exceeded her goal by 123% and Fortune Magazine quoted her.

“If there is something you really want to do, do it now.”
     -Ann Rea, Artist & CEO of Ann Rea, Inc.

Comments (12)

  • Danny Kamin


    I have a portfolio I’m showing for sale to collectors but no current web site as an overview of my works. On one of the pages in that portfolio are my credits. http://www.octobersun.co

    Want to know if you and Jeff Dunas made a deal for you to lecture in Palm Springs in March or April ?


  • Danny Kamin


    Just came across your note. Will email Jeff today.


  • CJ Schepers


    Hi Ann,

    I’m a ghostwriter, editor of books but need to push the limits to get my own stuff out there. My first book is finished but the idea of marketing it myself is paralyzing the blank out of me. Do you only work with painters, fine artists, etc.?


  • Ann Rea


    I’ve worked with musicians, film makers, and writers.


  • Caroline Kappers


    Very interesting and informative. Do you provide online strategy?



  • Ann Rea



    Do I offer consulting on online strategy? Yes.

    However, it must be part of an overall marketing strategy and a business plan comes before a marketing plan.

    Does that answer your question?



  • Luke O'Donnell


    Does your course cover art licensing and do you think that AL improves popularity or does it lower the value art due to the ambiguity of value and rarity?


  • Ann Rea


    Hello Luke,

    Great question.

    The course is an 8-week, intimate, live, online (foundational business course) for artists.

    It is designed to help artists uncover their:
    * mission
    * unique value proposition (UVP)
    * pain solve or alleviated by that UVP
    * target market served

    We do not delve into licensing because you have to be very clear on the points above BEFORE you develop licensing as a stream of revenue.

    Hope that helps.



  • Stephen


    Your article is brilliantly creative and substantive…..thank you Ann Rea!

    Stephen Bryer
    The Urban Artisan


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