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@JeffAllen, you're right that making a living as an artist is unlikely for most but I disagree about the MFA and tenured teaching. There are loads of people out there selling everywhere from sidewalks to the internet. I don't think they have anymore "talent" than anyone in the forum or lots of amateurs out there. The difference is they are working at selling themselves as much as selling there work. I'm in a big city with lots of "ART" events and places to show/sell. I think the difference is the ones making a living at it are willing to compromise and paint out of their preferred genre/subject matter and are willing to give instruction. People are paying ridiculous sums for pet portraits and car "portraits". I think very few working artists rely on galleries for their main income. If they do, they do they are either very good or probably fit into the category of "starving" artists.