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Meet Pete Tillack of Tillack Studio

Today we’d like to introduce you to Pete Tillack

Thanks for sharing your story with us Pete. So, let’s start at the beginning and we can move on from there.
Pete Tillack – Originally from Australia, I was originally an electrician then went on a surf trip that just never ended. Once on the road, it was easy to keep traveling, I filled 3 passports while I moved ventured the world for 10 or years. I was looking for waves and ended up getting an experience in life. In the last part of my journey I found a creative streak, so I honed my skills using oil on canvas, then 13 or so years later, here I am becoming a well-known artist with a very international collector base and galleries in different parts of the nation representing my work. I paint symbolism while using juxtapose, in most pieces I place an object (usually a couch/love seat) then surround it with what seems to be normal settings in life – cities, beaches, underwater, but I create a story of our lives thru association of objects and their symbolism, talking about our motivations, our heart breaks, our desires, our choices and what drives them – what connects people is all my pieces have a complete story almost like a song and most I have created videos to help direct people around each canvas – hard to explain but if you visit my site http://www.petetillack.com/art_symbolism/ it would help – a great example from one of the latest pieces is http://www.petetillack.com/art_symbolism/bullmarket.html.

I was in the early years of my new career as an artist (I started rather late) when I met my wife Lizbeth Garcia. We got married after about a year and decided to join our to passions, she was a rather well-known figure in the Pilates industry and was looking at opening up a studio. Instead of a wedding, we chose to create Tilcia Studios (TIL-lack and gar-CIA). It was to be a boutique studio where people could work out and be surrounded by fine art. Liz is a great trainer and had a very strong following, we also had a group of trainers on hand as the business grew.

At first Liz’s strengths in the Pilates really helped cover my financial end as the art world was a hard one to crack. She was able to carry our family as it grew in 2007 with our daughter Chilli being born. I worked out of home so I took most of that responsibility. I became very comfortable painting while having my daughter harnessed either to my front of from a hanging/bouncing chair in my studio while Liz taught ( I am sure she will tell you more when she fills out her side of the questionnaire). I did a lot of the back end of the business, such as the paperwork/ banking/ advertising etc. along with the grunt work such as repairs and moving stuff to free Liz to concentrate on her strengths. Still my work did not receive the level I wished it too and I struggled as we tried many roads.

In 2013 while doing a 3 month show in Arizona (yes the sacrifices our family made was to have me live there while both Liz and Chilli stayed in San Diego while Liz still worked at the studio) I hit a point of frustration where I was not doing well at all…. they say to be a true artist you have to be stripped naked and that was exactly it, my emotions where raw, I was looking for my voice and I threw it all at the canvas… this moment changed our lives. The connection was made, my work had a purpose and it was to tell my story of the ups and downs, the stress and the struggles – yet my voice fell on everyone as it became very familiar to all and something we can relate too. It has now been four years and it is only getting stronger, Liz was able to relinquish some of my ropes in order for me to focus more on the art as we both saw was happening. We have a very loving relationship that does have its ups and downs, but our love of our family and the passion for our life is strong – and when I say life, work is our life and it is our passion and we share that because we are surrounded by it and we love it’s challenges.

Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
As I have mentioned, I paint my road of experiences and share it thru the canvas.
I would use the piece ‘Perspective’ to answer this question – ‘Failure’ is thought of as such a taboo word…..

Society looks down on failure, but anyone who has reached or tasted success understands that they go hand in hand and you are usually walking close to the edge. The higher the dreams, the further one can fall.

Sitting at the bottom of the pool drowns out everything, there’s a comfort and peacefulness that overcomes you, knowing that this is as far down as you can go and you’re OK. But, you don’t want to stay at the bottom and when you come to terms with the fact you survived the fall, it is then that you have just opened up your limitations and are able to view the perspectives of your true goals. You never learnt to walk without falling a few times……

I would also invite you to view the video of the piece and its meanings at http://www.petetillack.com/art_symbolism/perspective.html#analysis

Please tell us about Tillack Studio – although, you will see later, my wife and I are together chasing our dreams, it may be better to let her fill out her own questionnaire for Tilcia Studios……
Again, I feel I have answered this in the previous question as I was unaware there was more of this style coming….

Our business is our life, it is three-seventeen which then encompass both my wife’s passion of pilates at Tilcia Studios and my passion of creating and telling stories thru Tillack Studios.

My work has found a unique genre which is very difficult in such a saturated marked of people knocking each other off….(or should I say finding inspiration in other people work) The ability to connected on another level with collectors and viewers thru my emotional story telling that the road of life is not paved with gold… there is plenty of shit that we step in, but we all get a little mud on us and if you get to the top of any field, you probably have more shit on you than any of the others as that is how we learn. I have been called the Anthony Robbins of the canvas, but I feel Robbins tells it too sweet…

If you had to go back in time and start over, would you have done anything differently?
If I was to change anything from my past, I feel the road I am on would be completely different….. all those times I fell, or should I say we, as a family, we learnt from.

Sure I could say that there were some contracts in the early years we could have read a little deeper in but this taught us to comprehend what was said and so we never fell again from the same thing, there are many situations that are out of our hands and they are just speed bumps, I love the challenges and I love the game of life, if I had a crystal ball, it would be boring to know where I am to end up.

As I mentioned, I used to be an electrician but now, I feel being paid a weekly wage would take away the challenge and most people start losing the passion of life as there is no target to reach if you realize that it does not matter how hard you work as there is a consistent carrot…..

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Carl Schultz

Getting in touch: SDVoyager is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you know someone who deserves recognition please let us know here.

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