Small Works – I’m Only Sleeping #art

Many of you ask to be pointed in the direction of small, affordable work from the body of my collection. Here is one I love and have hung in my home until recently. Contact me at if you are interested in pricing.

Jill Joy - I'm only sleeping - mixed media on canvas - 20x20" - 2007

Jill Joy – I’m only sleeping – mixed media on canvas – 20×20″ – 2007

The title comes from the Beatles song and refers to the eastern spiritual idea that we are dreaming this reality. As I get older and develop myself spiritually, I get a sense of this more and more strongly, just as I get a sense of the blurring between my dream world and my waking life.

Dreams, I believe, are how our soul communicate to us. Well, it’s one of the ways. In choosing to pursue art full time, my soul’s calling, I have begun to feel I am living closer and closer to my soul with each passing day. Thus despite the discomforts of my new life, financial uncertainty, smaller cheaper housing, etc. I find myself if not happier, then more content or satisfied.


Black Square #art

Cheers to you! I hope you are enjoying this day. It’s absolutely beautiful here in San Diego and I’m feeling blessed to live here. This is a recently completed piece – Black Square. It’s a little baby piece, 10×10″, completed, in a sense, as an afterthought with some leftover paint I had from a larger canvas. The more I looked at it though, the more I liked it. (read on….)

Jill Joy - Black Square - oil on canvas - 10x10 - 2013

Jill Joy – Black Square – oil on canvas – 10×10″ – 2013 – Pricing contact

I sometimes think what I do instinctively, without too much thought, is turns out to be my best work.

On a related note, I had a discussion not too long ago with an art gallery owner about the significance of leaving blank canvas in my work.

I find myself doing this, again, instinctively. But upon reflection I realized the significance of the symbolism of blank canvas for me. It is my sense that we are each an energetic, emotional, mental experience happening on a broader blank screen, or for me blank canvas. Some sort of emptiness or open space which we touch upon occasionally and which usually, when we do, brings a sense of peace or connectedness. Stillness. I’m spiritual by nature so for me this open space represents some kind of universal consciousness, but I don’t feel the need to define it too specifically.

Growth – New Work

This is a painting I completed recently. Again, part of my expanding Consciousness Series. What especially pleases me about this painting, aside from the intense sense of bursting and movement it captures, is that is seems to be the first painting where my two styles, Consciousness and Energy, intersect.

Jill Joy - Growth - oil on canvas - 60x48" -2013 - $1,950 USD

Jill Joy – Growth – oil on canvas – 60×48″ -2013 – $1,950 USD

As though my emotional and spiritual lives are getting closer to merging. See below an example of Energy and one of Consciousness. It occurs to me that this could be what enlightenment is, when there is no separation between the calling or knowing of the soul and one’s emotions.

Jill Joy - Aftermath - oil on canvas - 48x60" - 2012 - $1,950 USD

Jill Joy – Aftermath – oil on canvas – 48×60″ – 2012 – $1,950 USD

Jill Joy - Two Worlds Collide - oil on canvas - 72x48" - 2011 - $1,950 USD

Jill Joy – Two Worlds Collide – oil on canvas – 72×48″ – 2011 – $1,950 USD

Energy & Consciousness

The best works of art express the complexity of the human condition with an eye to transcendence. I work in two distinct styles which represent the dual aspect of the human condition.

My Energy Series is about the personal, individual struggle of dealing with loss, change and aspiration. Emotions are energy which must be allowed to move in order for us to transcend them. These paintings are intense, active and filled with a sense of that energy in motion.

Jill Joy - Dissolution - oil on canvas - 60x72" - $2,600 USD

Jill Joy – Dissolution – oil on canvas – 60×72″ – $2,600 USD

My Consciousness Series is about the end state or our “true” state – the sense of peace and place that comes when we are aligned with who we truly are, often after traversing a traumatic or difficult time and coming out on the other side. These paintings are about universal consciousness, and the individual’s place in that consciousness.

Jill Joy - Grey Skies - oil on canvas - 48x60" $1,750

Jill Joy – Grey Skies – oil on canvas – 48×60″ $1,750

There is an ongoing interplay in my life of clearing emotional energy to achieve a more profound and peaceful state of consciousness. As a result, I find myself alternating between these two forms of expression. I find myself wondering and perhaps expecting that at some point they will intersect.

Two Worlds Collide

This photo was taken by my friend Jeffrey Young at the reception of my show Expiation (on view at The Glashaus in San Diego thru Feb). What I find so interesting about this photo is that without realizing it (unconsciously?) Jeffrey captured the meaning and inspiration of this painting.

Jill Joy -  Two Worlds Collide -  Installation View. Photo by Jeffrey Young.

Jill Joy – Two Worlds Collide – Installation View. Photo by Jeffrey Young.

The painting is about a man and a woman – lovers who come into contact, from two very different world views and how that collision creates an explosion of energy and change. Like the explosion that would create the birth of the new universe.

Jill Joy - Two Worlds Collide - oil on canvas - 72x48" - $1,950 USD

Jill Joy – Two Worlds Collide – oil on canvas – 72×48″ – $1,950 USD

Summoning the Heart of Love

I recently finished this painting called Summoning the Heart of Love. It  was completed in two separate sittings, a couple of months apart. The inspiration was a conversation I had with a friend about “The Secret”  and the idea that we summon that which comes to us with our thoughts. I have mixed feelings about this idea. I believe it to be true on some level, however most of us are not aware of the thoughts we have and so are surprised when we get what comes to us.

Jill Joy - Summoning The Heart of Love - oil on canvas - 60x72" - 2012 $2,250 USD

Jill Joy – Summoning The Heart of Love – oil on canvas – 60×72″ – 2012 $2,250 USD

The idea for the painting developed from this conversation — what if I were to make a painting that expressed or summoned  the type of love I had been looking for and yet thus far have been unable to find with a man.

When I started the painting, I had recently spent the day at the beach with my former boyfriend, someone I love dearly but with whom it never seems to work out, despite being on and off again for the last nearly 7 years. It was a perfect sort of day, as it often was between us, but for the tension of unfulfilled love and attraction, which made it less than perfect. That day ended up sourcing the under painting. I was surprised that that is what I started painting about when I started this “Summoning”. (see first draft below)

Jill Joy -  Early Version of Summoning The Heart of Love - oil on canvas - 60x72"

Jill Joy – Early Version of Summoning The Heart of Love – oil on canvas – 60×72″

Some of you may like this version better – and because it is less subtle it may show up better in a photo. But after sitting with it for some months it seemed unfinished. Raw somehow and one dimensional, or maybe idealized and thus untruthful. So I let it sit. As that relationship devolved into 8 or 9 months post breakup, I began to see my way to finishing it.

After I saw the Life of Pi a couple of Sundays ago, I finished it the next day. I was inspired to completion by the scene in the movie when Pi just about gives up in the middle of the ocean, stranded for weeks, and about to be destroyed in a storm. He completely surrenders, embraces chaos, love and God.


Jill Joy - Doorway - oil on canvas - 72x48" - 2006

Jill Joy – Doorway – oil on canvas – 72×48″ – 2006 $1,750 US

In early 2006 I quit my day job and took some time off to paint. During the same period, I met a new man who I sensed would be important to me. I’d been married and divorced by this time in my life, and experienced the pain of losing the person I had loved most.

It took a huge leap of faith to give myself over to new love and the possibility of being hurt again. And also to quit work and open to the unknown. During the time I had off I painted until 2 and 3 am.

Jill Joy – Doorway – 72×48″ – oil on canvas – 2006

I knew from my previous experience that this would not be the “perfect” relationship, it would have issues and flaws, but I could tell that the relationship would be beautiful. I’ve come to realize that that which is meaningful is beautiful. I was painting late one night and my work took a totally new course as I was thinking about this new person. I painted “Doorway” which symbolized how I saw this new relationship. This became the first painting in the series “Life’s Not Perfect (but it’s beautiful)”.

It takes a lot of courage to walk through a new doorway in life. If you wait for the perfect moment, job, relationship or the perfect time to do what you love, it will never come. You have to follow your heart and seize the opportunities that you sense will be meaningful. The series that evolved from this piece explores the idea that even though life can be frustrating and disappointing sometimes, it can also be incredibly beautiful and poignant.