Artist Profile: Teenager Zalie Copeland

Zalie Copeland
Zalie Copeland "Black Cockatoo"

An interview with Australian artist Zalie Copeland and her mom.

How old are you and where do you live?

Zalie: 15 years old, I live in Eltham

Mom: Eltham is a suburb of Melbourne, state of Victoria in Australia.

Do you have any siblings?

2 brothers and a sister, Bryce is 17, Flynn is 15 (Zalie’s twin) and Anaye is 11

Zalie and her twin brother Flynn
Zalie and her twin Flynn


What are your hobbies?

Horseriding, Netball, Baking, Drawing, Painting, Sculpting

When did you start painting?

I do lots of different art, I think I have been doing painting since I was about 10.

Mom: When Zalie was 7 yrs old she started making miniature plasticine figurines and wonderful creations from pipe cleaners.  Then she started really painting about age 10.  She likes to mix her art, often attaching one of her tiny sculptures to a canvas she has painted, mixed media, makes it interesting and more visual.

What type of art do you like most?

I like painting, drawing, creating people using mixed media.

How do you come up with your fun and creative characters?

The ideas come from my brain. I watch people a lot, I get ideas from digital media and from my own experiences or thoughts.

Zalie Copeland “Black Cockatoo”


Zalie Copeland “All the Single Ladies”


Zalie Copeland “Night Life”


How do you feel about being Autistic?

I feel happy being autistic.

Mom: Zalie does not really see herself as that different, she knows she has autism.  But at this stage in her life when you try and discuss it, she simply says ‘OK no more talking now.’ Zalie is a very happy person within herself and is never bored or angry with autism, as it has blessed her with such a creative mind.

What would you like to share about your autism and your art?

Art is fun it helps me.  I can tell a story or my thoughts.

Mom: Zalie can talk and communicate, but it is hard for her to explain deeper thoughts and ideas, she does this through her art.  Zalie loves to watch people and the shape of the human body.  Zalie is also face blind, so she cannot see the finer details on peoples faces, this is why, often her art work may not show the face or the face may be more animated looking.

Zalie Copeland “Bowling”
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