LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) - One man's art is making a national and international impact. Little Rock native, Guy Bell, has been featured in magazines, on national television and in galleries across the country. Now, he is taking his passion for art here at home and using it to make a new impact in his community.
A light shining through the clouds above Heber Springs. Sunsets, highways and headlights. Guy Bell’s Arkansas memories becoming art.
“I really found a lot of inspiration from the early morning light coming over the rice fields toward the Stuttgart and England area,” Bell said. “Also, I drew inspiration from seeing the clouds over the mountains towards northern Arkansas in the Fort Smith area.”
Bell creates much of his art from memory and dreams. His penchant for painting is also very dreamlike. Lately, he has been focusing on clouds and skylines, creating over 40 new pieces of art in the last year alone. His work has gained him notoriety in Arkansas and beyond over the last decade. He’s even garnered an international following of clients from places like Turkey, Singapore, France, England, Germany and more.
He's presented his art to presidents and been featured on national television and nationally recognized galleries and magazines. He has had an unusual level of success for someone with no formal art training.
“I taught myself how to paint,” he said. “I took a class or two in college but nothing substantial.”
For Bell, being an artist was never really a choice. It was more like destiny. After a home invasion from a case of mistaken identity, an intruder aimed a gun at Bell's head and pulled the trigger. The gun didn’t go off. For Bell, it was a turning point.
“Through going through that process and learning about myself through that, I found that there was something important to me in doing artwork full time,” he said. “I wanted to be a person who created.”
That was six years ago and he has been doing art full-time ever since. Now, he's finding a way to share his passion with young people by giving them training he never had. He’ll be sharing training he's learned through experience and trial and error. Bell begins teaching junior high art classes for eStem this fall.
“It’s my first time teaching and it’s going to be fun,” he said. “I am really excited.”
He hopes to encourage students to follow their path and to make life a blank canvas ready to become a masterpiece.
“No day is guaranteed, so make the best of what you have every day,” he said.
If you'd like to meet Guy Bell or see some of his work you can go to his pop-up art show 5:30-8:30 p.m. on Friday, June 15 in North Little Rock at 317 Main Street.