We had the good fortune of connecting with Hannah Cole and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Hannah, what was your thought process behind starting your own business?
There were several factors. I wanted to have enough time outside the business to have an active studio practice, because I never planned to give up being a professional artist, and I knew that to get that, I would need to be my own boss. I also wanted to create a business that reflects my values, and that empowers my community (of fellow creators). When artists quit, the reason is usually money. So building economic empowerment for creative people is really my calling – it helps put more creative work out into the world. And lastly, I was treated terribly as an artist by accountants I worked with. I was judged, assumed to be unintelligent, and made to feel like I was wasting the time of the accountant, and that I didn’t “count” as a real client. I know there is a huge need for good accounting and tax information among creative people, and I decided to create the company I wanted to exist in the world.

Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
My business is Sunlight Tax. I teach artists and creative people of all kinds who work for themselves how to manage their taxes, set up their bookkeeping and record-keeping, use tax-advantaged accounts to make their money go further and build a “freedom fund.” When creative people have the “hard stuff” handled, they have more time to make their work and have a bigger impact on the world. I am proud of getting hundreds of creative people who never have had a business education to prioritize their financial well-being and set up retirement accounts.
Building this business has been a work of love, sweat and unbelievable levels of personal growth. I think of it as the personal development plan I never knew I was signing up for.
But my love for creative people runs deep, and the satisfaction I get from empowering the creative community cannot be overstated.

Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Dana Frankfort and Julia Hechtman, two incredibly accomplished artists who gave me their time and showed me what it looks like to build a badass career, keep moving forward despite setbacks, and not take any bullsh*t. I would also like to thank my gallerist, Tracey Morgan (of the Tracey Morgan Gallery), who is very good at what she does. The gallery world is a hard one, and I am so thankful to have someone working hard on my behalf.

Website: https://www.sunlighttax.com/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/sunlighttax/

Image Credits
The 3 professional photos are credit to Nicole McConville, Asheville, NC. The one with me and my Sunlight Tax sign courtesy Hannah Cole

Nominate Someone: ShoutoutLA is built on recommendations and shoutouts from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you or someone you know deserves recognition please let us know here.