Hutchins says the idea was born from several conver-sations
with her friends in the Wilmington film industry.
Like many other thriving businesses, Coastal Cleared Art
came about when a visionary/entrepreneur simply rec-ognized
a need and decided to fill it. The name reflects
the fact that the artwork seen in movies and TV shows
has to be cleared before it can be used. There is a moun-tain
of red tape, a spiderweb of complexity associated
with copyright laws, which have to be successfully nav-igated
before a work can appear in various production
Because of advanced technology, Hutchins is able to
run most of the operations from her home in Nosara,
Costa Rica. She has an assistant who is local to the
Wilmington area. Together, they help clients identify a
path through the red tape and ensure the work they are
interested in is cleared for use in other mediums.
Some of the other services Hutchins and her team at
Coastal Cleared Art offer include custom graphics and
posters, curatorial services, public domain research and
of course commissioned artwork. Aside from allowing
Hutchins to marry her passion for film and the arts — it
provides numerous other artists, around 35 at the latest
count, many of whom are from Wilmington — with an
opportunity to showcase their work and earn a living.
Watercolor Study For Sully, 36 x 24 inches, pencil, water-color
and paper on panel.
A NEW LIFE
IF that were not enough, Hutchins is also a successful real estate
investor who has renovated several homes. She has a number
of both long-term and vacation rental units, which are helping
to finance her Costa Rican relocation.
Occasional vacancies also provide her and Delilah with a place
to stay when they want to come back to visit family and friends.
Hutchins explains that owning and maintaining rental properties
are an aspect of her plan to live a simpler, happier life, free from
the constant pursuit of material gratification.
“A purchase only offers a fleeting moment of happiness,” she
says. “Our culture is based on the importance of constantly want-ing
new things; the latest phone, the newest car, etc. I wanted to
escape from all of that and find a slower pace, a more fulfilling
Hutchins admits that, at times, her adventure in Costa Rica has
been about managing first world expectations. Vacationers and
expatriates alike imagine that everything will simply be peaches
and cream in such a beautiful place, but day-to-day life is not with-out
its challenges. Certain things just don’t happen at a pace that
people are accustomed to in the first world. Acceptance is the key
for those who want to adjust; those who are unable to come to
grips with the fact that things are often unavailable or happen at a
slower pace will find lots of reasons to get upset.
“One lesson I’ve learned is just to celebrate the little victories,”
says Hutchins, who at one time was without a car for a week due
to a part being unavailable. Finding out that it likely could have
been sourced and shipped in the U.S. in a day or less is hard
enough. Discussing the issue in a foreign language adds another
layer of stress to the equation.
A number of moments have made it all worthwhile. Being
surrounded by awe-inspiring natural beauty, going on fun outings
with her daughter and new friends, and surfing good waves with
manta rays and dolphins in the background are but a few of the
Hutchins explains that a contributing reason for her decision
to move was to minimize her expenses and free up more time to
focus on her personal art.
“There’s a certain freedom in realizing that there is a difference
between wants and needs,” she says. “Being here has been about
shedding crutches for me, finding more time to focus on what is
With a new life awash in beautiful landscapes and fresh experi-ences,
more time on her hands and an art business that is perfect
for finding inspiration, there are a lot of reasons to be enthusiastic
about the future body of work from visionary artist/surfer/entre-preneur
WBM june 2020