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Jun 16, 2021

No Art Academy in Belize, So Kevin Morales Finds His Inspiration Online

We take you to Bella Vista tonight to meet a rising artist from that southern village. Like many artists he has a studio, but what is not as obvious is that this self-taught painter learned all his techniques from online classes. Now he is not only making his living from art; he is exporting it as well. Reporter Andrea Polanco has tonight’s artist profile. We will let her introduce you to Kevin Morales, the young man who put down his hammer and picked up a paint brush.


Kevin Morales, Painter

“When I was nine-years-old I started doing sketches in my books in primary school and I was always having problems in class because my teachers saw I wasn’t paying attention and always doing sketches in class.”


Andrea Polanco

“Did you ever imagine that you would be here today with your own studio doing commissioned pieces for customers?”


Kevin Morales

“No. No. I was always getting negative comments.”



Andrea Polanco, Reporting

These days, twenty-five-year-old Kevin Morales is a long way from doing sketches in notebooks. He has a painting studio in his home village of Bella Vista. There he paints realistic art on canvas that is commissioned by people all over the world.


Kevin Morales

“They would come to me and tell me they want me to do this painting. They give me a reference picture and size and they give me their address and I send it to their country. The first one I sent was to Germany and then after that was to USA and then Canada. And since then this has become my full-time job.”


Kevin Morales

His career took off almost five years ago; he met two persons in Placencia who recognized his talent and pushed him to do more.


Kevin Morales

“They saw my work and they said Kevin we would like to introduce you to canvas painting but before that I didn’t know anything about canvas. So, they helped me with the materials and paints and brushes and they said they want me to go for the art fest in 2017.”


While he’s a self-taught creative and had some artistic skills, he also had a lot to learn about that art of painting. And it wasn’t easy but he hasn’t looked back since.


Kevin Morales

“At that time I didn’t know anything. So, I went to YouTube and watched tutorials about how to use different bushes and the paint. And with time I got better. It was very hard for me because in Belize you don’t have art schools or they don’t teach much art classes and so I had to look for that on my own and started to do research on Google and YouTube and that was what helped me a lot.  Bit hard because I wasn’t selling that much but now thanks to God I am selling a good amount and always having commissions to do.  All of that is because I have put a lot of interest into it and a lot of time and this is what my last four years six months have been.”


Morales was a construction worker before his painting career became viable enough for him to earn his living from painting full-time. He wants other artists to be encouraged by his story.


Kevin Morales

“This year, I have started my house and I am very happy because I have done something that some people thought I wouldn’t have done it because here in Belize people don’t see art as a big thing that generates a lot but I have done very good at it. I was working in construction but I didn’t like that so now I am happy. Everybody in Belize would say you can’t make a living out of it but with time I have done it.  I would just like to tell the young Belizean guys if they want to start doing paintings – like I said we don’t have any art schools in Belize – to just keep on and they can go on Youtube and start their own research. In the future I will be doing tutorials of how to paint so I am hoping I can help with that for young Belizeans.”


A painting can take anywhere from a few days to over two weeks. Kevin’s paintings are inspired by nature and the things around him; he particularly loves big cats and sea turtles.


Kevin Morales

“I am more into realistic and I try all my best so that my paintings look real. Here in Belize that is also what tourists are looking for more; the wildlife; the flora and fauna.”


Andrea Polanco

“What has been your favourite piece that you have done so far?”


Kevin Morales

“Favorite – I have a lot but I mostly like jaguars and sea turtles. I just love it. I just love painting, doing realistic stuff.”


Reporting for News Five, I’m Andrea Polanco.


If you want to connect with Kevin Morales, you can find him on Facebook, Instagram and YouTube at Morales Arts.

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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