[Artist Story- 02] Matthew Phelan-Mattyperler's worldwide journey

[Artist Story- 02] Matthew Phelan-Mattyperler's worldwide journey

Appreciating a piece of art
not just for the art itself 
the story of
the artist
Bead your dream and live creative life!

Matthew Phelan

  Matthew Phelan & His Girl Friend


An usual beginning.  This is how I would best describe my story of how I got into beading.


I was born in Dublin but spent the majority of my life growing up in Liverpool, England.  However, I never started my artistic journey until my move to Sri Lanka where I lived for a year.  A new country, no friends, I slowly became a recluse.  My highlights of my day were waiting till 6 am to play minecraft with my friends Kieran, Ryan and Cameron; all who lived in England.  I had to wait so long to play due to the vast time difference between the two countries.  Here is where my journey into art, into pixel art began.


In the times of the day I would wait to play, I found myself just walking around on the game trying to find a way to entertain myself.  I found with all the different colour blocks I could go and build stuff, such as the icons on the bottom of the screen.  I found myself building pixel art with these blocks every day for hours and every now and again I would see these little things made out of beads and I thought it was so cool; the thought of having this pixel art here with me in the real world.  However, this thought would be put on the back burner as I had no clue what any of these beads were called and no where i  looked in Sri Lanka could I find them.

Fast forward a year and now I was Living in Newfoundland, Canada.  Whilst walking around a dollar store with my mum my eyes were drawn to this little packed.  It was the beads!  Immediately bought every packet out of the store; costing $15 and thus began my journey of beading at age 16.






     Ironing my first piece didn't really go to plan.  

    It was over melted, not  joined properly and warped multiple boards.  

    I learned a lot for this and it set me up for 4 years of beading.





                Matthew First piece


At age 17 I moved back to Ireland.  This is where things really began to take off for me.  I started to see a real change in my quality with my beading and in my ironing.  I now had more colours and a better understanding for how these small pieces of plastic worked.  Here I created my Instagram account, Mattyperler, and started to make a name for myself.  I began to look at other beaders on Instagram and really became inspired by them.  I wanted to grow and to do this I needed to get equipment.  I am only as good as the beads I used and so I began to look around for better quality beads.  I found nabbi, a great bead selection, strong and a good colour selection. This allowed me to rapidly become better, larger projects, more original pieces and just better stuff.


Made with Nabbi

My next big step in bead art was becoming connected with Artkal.  I have now been with them for over a year and honestly couldn't be happier.  Their colour selection was great and really allowed my work to progress into the next stage.  I got wind of an art competition running in Ireland and set my sights on it.  It would entail you having an art piece in a gallery and an international tour for 2 years.  I took my chances and with my new found beads I went for it.  92 people entered the competition and i made it into the final 30.  Now was the second stage where I had to get interviewed for a place in the final 20.  I brought tons of beads with me and showed off all my new work and tried to stand out for the crowd.  1 month later I received an email telling my I made it into the top 20 and my biggest challenge began.



I wanted my piece to stand out and be the best piece I have ever built.  My biggest piece before this was 6600 beads but this one was looking at over 20,000 beads.  I got as many colours as i could from Artkal for it so I could get as much detail as possible and set out on this task.  Surprisingly it only took me about 20 hours to finish over about 4-5 days.  The final piece was finished and displayed in the civic theatre as part of the Alzheimer's exhibition.



   Displayed in the civic theatre as part of the Alzheimer's exhibition.

                                                                                   --Matthew made with Artkal Beads



My biggest inspiration is probably my father, Andrew.  He to is also an artist but of a different medium.  He is a 3D artist and builds characters, vehicles or add ons for games on platforms such as phones, ps3, ps4 and pc.  He pushes me everyday with my art and helps me drive to become better and diverse.  We have started working on projects together for the 3D printer and CnC machine which will be seen in the near future.


My next goal is conquering the 3D beaded world and with this in mind, I have started to learn several 3D packages to aid me in my new original creations. I am also putting more time into showing people how to make 3D stuff whilst I do it too so I have created a YouTube channel that I will be filling with beading tutorials.  You haven't seen the last of me and my best is only to come!



Learn more about Matthew Phelan?


                 IG: @mattyperler           FB: @mattyperler               YouTube:  @mattyperler


Do you have the same experience?
Does the story of Matthew remind you of anything?
Anything you want to say or want to say to Matthew
can be left with your comments below.
Thanks for reading! :)



Leave a comment

Please note, comments need to be approved before they are published.

    1 out of ...