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Jeffrey M. Sparr  

Founder, PeaceLove.

PeaceLove Artist and Co-founder Jeff Sparr is a man on an audacious mission – a mission to make mental illness cool. Not cool to have, but cool to support. A family man, mental health advocate, teacher and self-taught artist, Jeff is above all a survivor, battling Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) much of his life. Inspired by a simple, powerful image signifying “peace of mind and love for yourself,” Sparr set out to build the first symbol for mental health and bring expressive arts to millions of people to help them create peace of mind.

Jeff was a college athlete when he first began to experience symptoms, which were eventually diagnosed as OCD. He began treatment and continued on with his life, getting married, starting a family, and launching a successful textile career. Through it all he was waging a daily war against the illness.

Looking for an outlet to help cope with the mounting pressures of running a business while fighting his disease, Jeff turned to painting to help him relax.

When Jeff paints he displays few symptoms of his OCD, which otherwise are always with him. Painting provides him a creative outlet and helps give him a sense of control. Through his art, Jeff finds a release from the mental strain of his disease. To put it simply, Jeff found peace through painting.

What began as a release from the challenge of living with OCD has created an unexpected passion as an artist. Jeff’s unconventional style, combined with interesting subject matter, brilliant colors and keen sense of movement have gained him local and national recognition.

Now, though his Peace Love Organization Jeff hopes to help others find what brings them peace to help deal with whatever challenges they are facing. As Jeff says, “Let’s face it, everyone has something they are dealing with. If there is a way to help people find the thing that brings them peace, be it art, music or whatever that “thing” may be, I want to help them find it. Finding my own peace through painting has changed my life and helped me not only cope, but thrive despite this debilitating disease.”

Here is a guy dealing with a very personal struggle, who had the courage to embark on a journey that combined his talents – art and entrepreneurship, with a vision of making a difference. The name and unique logo, which is prevalent in many of Jeff’s pieces, stand as a commitment to helping people find these two basic, but often elusive feelings: Peace and Love.

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