Painting becomes pastime for Beckford


Khiya Dixon

Sophomore Brian Beckford holds a picture he painted. He took up painting during COVID.

Khiya Dixon, Staff Writer

Sophomore Brian Beckford began oil painting when the pandemic started in 2020. He’s been creating art all of his life, but finally he found a form of art perfect for him.

For two years, Beckford painted from 7 a.m. to late in the night, eating dinner in his at-home art studio, and watching painters such as Andrew Tischler and Michael Chamberlain on YouTube. 

“I was basically just like an around the clock painter and that definitely wasn’t the healthiest thing,” Beckford said. “But it paid off, and now I’m having fun.” 

Recently, Beckford went to the Grand Canyon Celebration of Art, where people all around the globe gather to paint one of the world’s greatest marvels. He saw painters he held to such high standards working in person. 

Beckford also became closer with his dad through painting. Around once a month they paint scenery together and hang out. 

“Like, I never really, truly was close to my dad until recently when we would just go out and paint,” Beckford said. “I feel like we’ve really bonded with that, just painting and having a good time. An entire day of painting and talking and listening to reggae music.” 

Beckford’s plan for the future is to major in art history in college. He wants to become a museum curator and eventually a full-time painter. 

He’s fascinated with art history, and he said the school library provides a good catalog of books on the matter, including “Norman Rockwell: Pictures for the American People.” It contains insight on art’s impact on American culture. 

In addition to reading about art, Beckford suggests beginner painters start their art journey on YouTube. 

“Especially if you’re doing something specific like oil painting, like the stuff you can learn on YouTube is just endless,” Beckford said. “But honestly, just practice is the main thing I would recommend to beginners.”