KEVIN SULLIVAN FIRST DISCOVERED James Hill’s work on an enormous billboard as part of an ad campaign for VISA. Hill had been commissioned because of his unique style established in the magazine and advertising business during in the 1950s and 60s. During this time Hill also had the privilege of becoming the protégé of legendary American illustrator Norman Rockwell. James Hill had created many of his own covers for The Saturday Evening Post right alongside Rockwell. Sullivan had been struck by the delightful VISA ad campaign in full homage to Rockwell, led by an elf painting a marionette of himself at the North Pole.Sullivan fell in love with Hill’s work at first sight and sought him out to create the iconic poster images for the first and second Anne films. Sullivan was delighted to find out Hill had also done the cover illustration for the book The Little Immigrants which chronicled stories of orphan immigrants being sent to Canada during the 19th century; a book that influenced Sullivan’s research in the making of his films.Sullivan and Hill became good friends and collaborators through 40 other commissions over the next 20 years. He produced several more Anne images as well as numerous graphics and original works for Sullivan Entertainment, all of which now form a treasure-trove within the company’s art collection. Hill passed away in 2004.
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Capturing the essence of Canada’s scenic beauty is an art-form. One of the masters of capturing this essence is the Canadian illustrator James Hill, whose paintings and illustrations are featured on the Sullivan Boutique website. As with all art, it can only add to the painting when you know a little something about the one who made the brushstrokes. Here’s some more information about the famous illustrator James Hill (1930-2004).