Hometown: Tunis Mills
Matthew Hillier was born in the Buckinghamshire village of Farnham Common, which is a stone’s throw from Windsor Castle. His family moved down to West Sussex and he was lucky enough to be brought up in a beach house in a small seaside community called Elmer Sands.
At sixteen Matthew left school to attend Dyfed College Of Art in Carmarthen S.Wales. The College was the first in the country to offer a “Wildlife Illustration Course and Matthew was the youngest student in the College. He spent three Idyllic years traveling around the Welsh countryside learning to paint Birds and Animals. He Graduated with distinction.
Before his eighteenth birthday he had three of his paintings accepted by the Royal Academy for its Summer Exhibition. This was a first, and led to a barrage of publicity, and some very useful early name recognition.
He went on to earn his living as a wildlife artist and illustrator. Over the next few years he Illustrated many books, magazines, calendars, greetings cards etc, whilst also finding time to have exhibitions of his paintings. He was elected a member of the Society Of Wildlife Artists, as well as being a regular exhibitor in many of the other societies Including The Paris Salon, the Pastel Society and the Society Of Marine Artists. Over the years he has won many awards all over the World. His Illustration Career culminated in a Commission to Illustrate a large limited edition book called “The Rhinoceros, A Monograph. This commission changed everything. He spent several years traveling around the World studying four of the five species of Rhinos in their habitat. He was Invited to spend three months in Zimbabwe looking at Black and White Rhinos and spent time in the jungle in Sumatra with ”Torgamba”, a beautiful sumatran rhino
He began to work with publishers in the States doing limited edition prints. Whilst working with Mill Pond press he was Invited by the company to spend two years in Florida. During this time he was sent to galleries around the country promoting his prints. Whilst on a Plein Air painting course in Montana he began dating the artist Julia Rogers. They went on to marry. They have a teenage son Patrick, and two older step children, Matthew and Stephanie.