Will Sillin

Fine Art and Illustration


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Overnight on the Chinle Trail, oil on paper, 7" x 5.25", 2022

Let's Hike Angels Landing, oil on paper, 4" x 5.5", 2021

The first plein air sketch of my 2021 Artist in Residence done from the

trailhead at the Grotto. Private collection (Massachusetts)

Glen Canyon near Hite Crossing, oil on paper, 5" x 7", 2021

A monochromatic field sketch from the Hite Crossing overlook.

I had the privilege to serve as an Artist In Residence at Zion National Park in 2021. The paintings on this page are the product of a trip to Utah in 2020 in lieu of the postponed residency and 2021/22 paintings resulting from the residency. A thank you as wide as the vistas depicted below to the fine people at Zion National Park and the National Park Service for making the Artist in Residence program a reality. 

Click on images for enlargements

Loser's Bay, oil on paper, 5" x 7", 2022 

A view of the cliffs in Lake Powell Navajo Tribal Park from a small bight on Last Chance Bay where we beached our boat in Glen Canyon National Recreation Area. Private collection (Florida)

The Big Bend of Zion, oil on paper, 5.5" x 7", 2021 A plein air sketch in Zion's Scenic Valley. California Condors have made the red cliffs here their home.

Zion: Space and Time. oil on paper, 8" x 12", 2022 The summer night sky and Milky Way reveals the towers of Zion's scenic valley. Private collection (Massachusetts)

Spirits of the West Rim, oil on canvas, 18" x 34", 2022.The title refers to the American Indian philosophy that everything in nature, not just the charismatic megafauna, has a spirit. The smallest mote of dust is animated with spirit.
With patient, close observations of nature we might sense those spirits and their stories and thereby acquire some of their wisdom.
The subject is a view of Zion, not from a well known destination like Angels Landing or Observation Point but instead from a break in the forest and thicket along the West Rim Trail. My guess is less than 1 in 1,000 visitors to Zion hike the West Rim Trail. The 19 mile trail crosses the West Mesa connecting Lava Point to the Grotto in the Scenic Valley. From the top down it crosses through upland forests and meadows before offering up its signature views of West Zion and later the stupendous slot canyons descending to the main "Scenic Valley". 
Here, in the distance on the viewer’s left and on the far side of the Scenic Valley are Deertrap Mountain and the East Temple. East Zion lies beyond them in the far distance. The near distant ridge leads out to Castle Dome. Concealed by this ridge is a side canyon above the Emerald Pools, a popular scenic valley destination. Below the shadowed side of the ridge and immediately before us is a deep, narrow, nameless slot canyon that intersects Heaps Canyon. This nameless canyon terminates at the Court of the Patriarchs with Mount Abraham bathed in the morning sun above it. The northern faces of the towers of west Zion mark the far right end of the distant horizon. 

This artwork was produced under the Artist in Residence Program at Zion National Park.

Limited edition giclée prints available

View From Skyline Rim, oil on paper, 5.5" x 8", 2020

Many dirt roads that cross featureless plains in the desert will eventually end with a view like this. Somewhere down there in the orange and blue below the horizon the Mars Society prepares for their next move.


Angels' Landing, oil on paper, 4" x6", 2020

A similar view to "Where Angels Tread" above right. Yes there is a trail with chains to grasp that leads to the top of that 1500 ft high knife edge monolith. 

Bowknot Bend, oil on paper, 5.5" x 8.5", 2021

The Green River loops through its deeply incised figure 8 meander north of Canyonlands National Park. This passage shows the river going away in the left foreground and coming back at us several miles later in a view made possible by the collapsed wall of the cliffl in the center. Private collection (Georgia)

Weeping Wall, oil on paper, 6.5" x 9", 2020

This stupendous cliff face greets visitors driving in from the east side of Zion on Rt.9 as they emerge from a long tunnel.

Allstrom Point Light Bath, oil on paper, 5" x 7", 2021

Lake Powell, Gunsight Butte and Navajo Mountain as seen from cilffs of Allstrom Point. Private collection (Massachusetts)

Where Angels Tread, oil on paper, 7.5" x 10", 2021

Angels Landing, The Great White Throne and the floor of Zion Canyon far below.  A similar view to Angel's Landing below. Both of these paintings are of the afternoon light. One has to hike up very early to capture the light as Maynard Dixon did when he stood nearby to paint "High in the Morning"

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