It’s a fabulous career move to go from gracing the canvas to painting the canvas with grace. That’s what this week’s feature artist on the Affluent Artist, Wanakee Pugh, has done. Wanakee was a top fashion model in the eighties, and after stints as a hair care product mogul and preacher, she is now a successful artist.
Here’s what Wanakee has to say about herself in her FB Group:
“Before Vera Wang became a national symbol for creativity and success, she was a talented and spirited fashion editor for Vogue Magazine. In 1981 she began featuring a new face in her glamorous editorial pages. Today artist Wanakee Pugh credits Ms. Wang for giving her a tremendous start that launched a successful twenty-year modeling career. Appearing advertisements and television commercials for such
industry giants as Revlon, Clairol, and Avon, Ms. Pugh graced the covers of the country’s top fashion magazines. As an industry groundbreaker, she was interviewed by talk show icons Merv Griffin, Geraldo Rivera and Regis Philbin.
Throughout her world travels, she was exposed to the world of art. As a long-time resident of New York City, she took full advantage of the city’s rich artistic culture. She routinely visited her favorite spot– the Metropolitan Museum of Art, where she would view the museum as her classroom, and keen observa¬tion as her instructor. She began deciphering each work as a series of lines, shapes, shadows, high¬lights, and colors. From Rembrandt to Fragonard, the pattern began to resonate from within her.
For this self-taught artist, the defining moment that fueled her first trip to the art store occurred one rainy Tuesday afternoon. An exhibit of the spectac¬ular Hudson River School artists compelled her to sit silently in the great hall, observing the grandeur through tears.
Ms. Pugh’s love of art, combined with her intuitive ability to create a beautiful environ-ment, prompted her to offer art–by design. “One should never underestimate the power of art within a room. The impact can be subtle, yet profound. While it’s true that not everyone has the ability to paint a picture, everyone has the ability to convey an idea, and most people know what they’re looking for; even it they cannot find it. I endeavor to follow through with their vision through original art that is both individual and personal. ”
Wanakee owns Art By Design, where she does commission work, corporate art and children’s portraits. She has also branched into interior design. I’ve been getting to know her on FB for several months now and she is a good spirit with a great sense of humor. I like her, always happy to see her chime into discussions with her sense of mischief.
The Affluent Artist principal this week is that of branding; this beautiful lady has built a brand around her name and whether she is selling hair care products or her own art, people know the name “Wanakee” as being synonymous with beauty. Once you build a brand for yourself, it stays with you forever and will be your most powerful marketing tool. Choose carefully!