Sara TilyouA successful model, I was 25 when I had my first spiritual crisis / psychotic breakdown. After 16 days, I was released from the local mental institution, only to repeat that experience two times in the coming years. Now at 30, I understand the necessity of adding spirituality and awareness of the mind-body connection to mental health care.

I express myself best creatively. By donating this painting I celebrate spiritual healers, psychics, naturopaths, and other alternative practitioners. My hope is to help NAMI-NYS change mental health care into a broader health care system linking mind, body and spirit, and fight the stigma associated with mental health disorders.


I draw inspiration from nature and the trees. The surround sound of silence, the freshness of the breeze, mixed with the breath of the trees, are what connect most with my spirit.

I love the abstractness of being alone in the forest, with the sunset sky and shadow silhouette of trees. This organic feeling of oneness is what I aim to create in my paintings. 

It is fun learning to express my creativity in productive and positive ways – in as many ways as possible. 
I hope to inspire others to do the same and to cherish their own uniqueness and express themselves in their own way.