A Q&A with Southlake’s Ella Beeman

By Rebecca ChristophersonMay 22, 2024June 10th, 2024No Comments

A Q&A with Southlake’s Ella Beeman

By Scott Nishimura
Photography by Olaf Growald

Graduate of Westlake Academy, now a Texas A&M freshman, talks love of art, architecture, travel and what’s ahead

It’s been a year since audiences at Southlake’s Art in the Square last saw Ella Beeman. Beeman, who graduated from Westlake Academy in 2023 and completed her freshman year at Texas A&M this spring, entered the youth art contest at Art in the Square during 11th and 12th grades and won honorable mention last year. Beeman, 19, granddaughter of a diplomat, has already lived and traveled extensively overseas. 76092 caught up with Beeman this spring for a Q&A on her creative process and what she’s up to now.

76092: Tell us what drew you into art.

Ella: My dad paints as a hobby, so I used to see all his paintings around the house, and he got me into drawing. During COVID, I would be really bored and I would just draw graphite sketches. In high school, I was in the [international baccalaureate] program [at Westlake Academy], I had to do 15 paintings with different media. That’s when I started painting for real for the first time. I really enjoyed painting, especially when I got into acrylic. Unlike watercolor, I could keep layering more details. I love doing realism. Just more layers that you add. With acrylic, I could do that.

76092: You’ve traveled a lot already. Tell us how that’s inspired you.

Ella: My mom grew up in Europe, and she wants us to experience the culture of that. Especially loving architecture. I truly love architecture. Last year, we went to Amsterdam. It was my first time truly walking by myself in Europe. The architecture just drew me in and made me feel so safe. I took a photo of it. I wanted to replicate it. I wanted to get every single detail right, even down to the portapotty. I wanted that detail to show and I wanted that sense of realism to show.

76092: Tell us what you’re doing now.

Ella: I’m at Texas A&M, studying architecture, [toward] a bachelor of science in architecture. I’m hoping to get into the graduate school of architecture. I’ve always had a passion in architecture. I look at places and think of a person you want to feel comfortable around. I have those certain places I feel comfortable around. I want to create those types of spaces.

76092: What kinds of places inspire you?

Ella: Around my hometown, a place in Westlake kind of reminds me of Europe: Entrada. There’s a bunch of stones, and there’s a lake that goes through. There’s a bridge I can sit on. Outside of Texas, Amsterdam. A lot of these places I’m connected to have water. Another one is Prague. I went there last summer. I felt just amazed. Italy for me is always safe. I’ve gone there quite a few times because my mom grew up there. European architecture is amazing. The history of Italy and the holiness of Italy. The water. The presence of fluidity in everything, and the way the light reflects on it. The calmness. I just feel safe around it.

76092: Any idea where you’d like to practice your architecture?

Ella: I grew up here, so there’s always a place that’s safe for me. You never know. You just trust the process. As part of my junior year, I’m going abroad. You can either go to Florence or Spain. Right now, my plan is to get an internship in Texas and then get a job.

76092: Do you still paint?

Ella: Now, when I have time, I just paint for fun. Most of my paintings, I want to be a memory of my life.