By Ryan Velez
At 13 years old, most people are just figuring out what their talents, interests, and skills are. Atlanta Black Star reports that one North Carolina girl is well ahead of the game, with an art career many adults would be jealous of.
Camryn Green has sold over 500 paintings, is the author of a children’s book and uses the proceeds from her artwork sales to sponsor a student in Liberia, according to The News & Observer. Other organizations are recognizing her as well, with her speaking at 38th annual MLK, Jr. Interfaith Prayer Breakfast in Raleigh last month, and being featured as the News & Observer’s “Tar Heel of the Week,” where she got to speak about how she manages to handle all these responsibilities, and what other young business owners like her can do.
“I always wanted to be an artist,” she told The News & Observer of how she got her start. “I’ve been painting since I was 4, although I have never taken any art classes. One day I just stopped the color-by-number painting, got out a canvas and painted freehand, and it actually looked pretty good.”
“My mom and I made a Facebook page, and orders started coming in,” Green added. “So we started Camryn’s Creations.” Prices range from $20 to $100 for larger paintings. To date, she has sold around 500. Some money goes into a college fund, while other money goes back into the business. The rest goes to orphaned children in Liberia who can’t afford to go to school. Green was inspired after hearing from a friend’s mother about conditions in the country.
“Since I was little, I have always wanted to help them, so when I started my business I immediately wanted to do something,” she explained. “I’ve been able to sponsor a yearly scholarship for a young lady named Princess for two years, and we are doing it this year too.
“It’s $300 a year,” Green continued. “She’s 13, too. I really want to go to Liberia to visit her. She sent me an outfit – a Liberian outfit and I love it – and I sent her a necklace and one of my paintings.”
For other kids looking to become an entrepreneur like her, Green offered this bit of advice: “Set a goal for yourself first. I set a goal to make at least 10 paintings. I was 8 and I didn’t know much about it. Work hard, be consistent with it, and don’t give up on your dreams.”