In my art studio, space is limited, and there is just barely room for this latest 4 foot by 8 foot canvas. I love working in large scale. I won’t give it up for anything, though I still find making small 14″ x 11″ collages on paper and unstretched canvas a way to grow as a painter daily by leaps and bounds.
“The Fall of Western Civilization” Details
Click on above images to enlarge.
The title of this work comes from the general shift of virtually everything I see around me on every level, in government, both Federal and State, in institutions, in relationships, in land, in all aspects of our culture, in all aspects of life. Though with the changes comes movement and flexibility with new connections occurring at a most rapid pace.
This painting was painted by our younger daughter shortly after her hospitalization eight years ago. She was fifteen at the time. It is titled, “I Will Be Found“. (I’ve written about this painting and the benefits of art on several occasions…art is such an important aspect of self care and brain health recovery.) She has added […]
“I hadn’t painted in over six months. As a professional artist, I was depressed because I didn’t feel like I had adequate studio space. But after reading Nancy Hillis’ new book “The Artist’s Journey,” I created all of this in under two hours. No more excuses for me! I am a professional artist who has been painting for over 40 years, and I am certainly not about to give up now! ” Artist Jan Kirstein
In “The Artist’s Journey,” author Nancy Hillis has woven for us an intricate, structurally sound and radically uplifting tapestry of inspiration and guidance, not only for today’s creative artist, but for all seekers of truth who want to live, thrive and come alive and aware in the 21st Century.
Her magic carpet of structural threads stems from and includes her personal and direct knowledge and experience of 20 plus years as a Stanford trained existential psychiatrist. Combine this with her well of seemingly limitless understanding of the workings of the subconscious mind and explorations of the self.
Watch how she weaves her epistle with a myriad of powerful gossamer threads highlighting and illustrating her eloquently stated concepts and revelations. As you move through “The Artist’s Journey,” compendia of cultural knowledge and illustrative stories range from Biblical to Medieval to Modern Day writings and literature providing direct illustrations of her key concepts.
Also included with this book are links to Nancy’s “Studio Journey” lessons and exercises for painters at any level, from beginners to age old painting aficionados.
And finally, the ubiquitous warp and woof of her grand tapestry is undergirded and revealed by Nancy’s extensive background and real life experience as an abstract painter. Her direct art journey provides for all of her readers a sure footed guidance and understanding of how to incorporate all of the revelations of her magical tapestry into the unique life of each and every reader. She engages us with her truth, examples, stories and insight, whisking us away on a magic carpet of joy in the journey through enlightenment.
Facing into your fears, learning to trust yourself and embracing the abandoned self are the basic gold nuggets and key steps to take on the Artist’s Journey. Nancy explores and explains these monumental tasks of the Artist, complete with a weaving of stories from multiple cultures and times.
Trusting yourself is the holy grail of creating, she says. She gives the example of Jacob wrestling with the Angel by the Jabbok River in the Bible. She uses this story to illustrate the truth that to express yourself in art, you first have to master yourself.
Face into your fears, she says. She illustrates the exploration of the artist’s reliance in their own life struggles to enable creativity of inner voice and vision to emerge. She illustrates this importance of struggle as necessity with the story of Dante’s “Divine Comedy.” She shows us how this story reflects a journey into the subconscious mind and the paradox of finding strength and transformation even as you experience powerlessness.
She reminds us with an example from Clarissa Pinkola Estes’ “Women Who Run With the Wolves” that dying is as essential as birth in the creative process. Facing the dark night of the soul is essential.
Accept the parts of yourself that you have rejected and abandoned, she says. “Invite them back because they have something to teach you,” she says, encouraging us to employ talking to ourselves as a process to turn around Solomon’s Paradox, the age old observation that some are much better at giving advice to others than to themselves. The way you talk to yourself can help release emotional blockage by allowing insight to uncover and allow epiphany through inner dialogue.
Concrete maps and details for proceeding in the Artist’s Journey are the basis of this book, combined with enlightening advice and engaging stories from a myriad of times and cultures. As a professional artist for over 35 years, I will use “The Artist’s Journey” as requisite curriculum for the next 50 years of my creative life. “The Artist’s Journey” by Nancy Hillis is the new Required Reading and Bible of Creating for all Artists and Seekers of Truth in the 21st Century.
Get your “The Artist’s Journey” by Nancy Hillis HERE.
By Nancy Hillis will be released January 27, 2019. Reserve your copy today on Amazon HERE.
“Just when you think hope has left the building, someone like Nancy Hillis comes along and revives our purpose and place in the universe. Her book “The Artist’s Journey” is a game changer, a mind bender and a true epiphany of purpose for every living artist living in the challenges of the 21st Century. Whether large or small, old or young, novice or profoundly proficient, this book will seal the artist’s path with purpose, passion and fortitude.” By Artist and Writer Jan Kirstein
“Best book ever on the entire process of painting. Gripping. Insightful. Authentic. How does the artist scale the heights of true creative expression? This book guides you through that journey.” Artist and Writer Jan Kirstein
Nancy Hillis | Artist | Author | Psychiatrist | Art Teacher. Book: The Artist’s Journey available on Amazon.
” I quote from Paul Auster and I say: You find the painting where you work on it; that is the adventure. I love the challenge of collage, and the possibilities that are opened up in front of me, the work of the torn paper, crumpled or ripped and glued up piece of paper. Additionally, I like the intimate act. The superposition of different material and paint highlight the theme of concealment and transparency with mixed media like acrylic, ink and pens…
UNTITLED. 100 X 80 MIXED MEDIA ON CANVAS 2015
I add the necessities of drawing and graphics, I also meditate at length the nature and I try to learn more. I try to be as simple as I can, I like this movement on the surfaces of doors and walls, and I like to pass on my painting.
Inspiration is everywhere, and the artist must start from what is local to transcend it, travelling beyond and reaching what is global and universal. Like Naguib Mahfouz, one must start from “where I am.” The Urban scenery is a rich material that I exploit. A contemporary artist must draw on contemporary subjects.
IN THE STUDIO
Technical capability should guide the artist in the development of his work, pleasant warmth or a wild and sour chilliness. These elements are reminder of my childhood, which I spent in an open air. There, I learned to become familiar with the surroundings and tried to tame the wildness of this space. In my later works, I’ve chosen to intervene on pre-worked supports, fully or partially, like calendars, catalogs, or collage of paper and cardboard paper trying to go beyond what has already been created ».
ABDELLAH EL HAITOUT ,SALÉ (MOROCCO), 2016
ABDELLAH EL HAITOUT IS A SIGNIFICANT ABSTRACT PAINTER WHO IS CURRENTLY CREATING WORKS OF GREAT NOTE. HIS ENERGETIC ORGANIC SHAPES AND TEXTURES COLLIDE WITH EXUBERANCE AND DEPTH IN AN OCEAN OF LAYERS OF CASCADING PAINT.