Teen Artist Takes Up Painting While Homebound

This 14-year-old picked up a paintbrush when she couldn’t play hockey.


Art, Creativity
Art supplies to paint with.

(portumen / Shutterstock.com)

Teenage artist Makenzy Beard  took up painting when she had extra time on her hands when schools closed in March 2020, and now her work is being displayed at prestigious art galleries. She never expected her work to be this successful.

In fact, the Swansea, Wales youth only began painting when the pandemic lockdown prevented her from playing hockey for the Wales Under-16s team, according to iNews. She told iNews that, “she was looking for something different to do.”

Makenzy picked up a paintbrush and just kept going. Her mom used to paint and there was still paint, brushes and canvases in the converted garden shed which was used as a studio, according to the BBC.

Now, Makenzy paints portraits of the people in her life. “I've always loved creative things but up until that point that was my first-time painting portraits,” Makenzy told BBC. She uses photographs rather than having people sit for the portraits and each one takes many hours to complete.

The John Tucker portrait went viral
One of the people that Makenzy decided to paint was her neighbor John Tucker. This portrait of Tucker, who’s a farmer, was recently displayed in an exhibition at the Royal Academy of Arts in London.

“John is a wonderful person and has a really lovely, kind and friendly demeanor," said Makenzy. So, one day, she snapped some photos and went to work. The portrait took her 20 hours, spread over three weeks, to finish.

“I was very busy at the time I decided to do this one, so I was taking five minutes before school, an hour after school before sport. It was all broken down, I never spent one long extended period of time on it,” she said. When it was completed, a photo of the portrait went viral on her school’s twitter account.

Tucker said he was very surprised by the portrait. “I didn't expect to see what I did see in the end. It's absolutely brilliant. It's like a photograph…My family say it's exactly like me…For her age she's a very talented young lady.”

What’s new for the young artist
Her work has been critically acclaimed and Mackenzie now has paintings on display at the Blackwater Gallery in Cardiff and received an offer for £10,000 on one of them according to iNews.

“Anyone can be a good portrait artist, but I think it takes a lot to show real personality and the soul of a person through their pieces, and I think for someone so young, Makenzy does this brilliantly,” Kimberley Lewis, the director of the Blackwater Gallery told BBC.

The Popularity of Bradley Hart’s Bubble Wrap Art
Building a Trust Community for Artists Across the Globe
LA Artist Gets the Red Carpet Treatment