Zena El Farra launched MasterPeace, London’s first Mindful Painting Experience Studio, to help people manage their mental health and wellbeing. We had the opportunity to feature Zena and how she has successfully pivoted her art business during the Covid pandemic.
Submitted by Kath Kay
Appearing in the first episode of the new series of Dragons’ Den, young London entrepreneur Zena El Farra secured investment from Deborah Meaden for her mindful painting business MasterPeace.
The Dragons were struck by Zena’s vision for using creativity as a tool to help people manage their mental health and wellbeing. During the pandemic, Zena (28), pivoted her studio-based painting business to create a series of At Home Art Kits, as a way to help people cope with the anxiety around Covid-19, and the negative effects of self-isolation.
Known for her commitment to wellness brands, Deborah invested £50k for 25% of Zena’s business. By making art more accessible for both adults and children at home, Zena hopes to help more people benefit from its soothing yet invigorating potential.
“At MasterPeace we want to raise awareness about the causes and cures of our modern stress epidemic. Whilst there is no silver bullet, research shows building self-care activities into our routines like drawing, colouring in and painting can be a small but powerful way to sustainably reduce stress,” said Zena.
Zena has taken a non-conventional career path, reflecting how many of us have been forced to adapt due to Covid-19, be that furlough, redundancies, or supplementing income through side-hustles.
Describing Zena, Deborah said “She started her business whilst on a sabbatical from the big company she worked at. She decided to make it full time just as the pandemic started, forcing her to switch focus from studio art classes to mindful painting at home, with home art classes and art kits. She was pretty inspirational.”
“I really saw something in Zena and the MasterPeace experience that is increasingly relevant. I loved the actual product at a moment when we are all looking to try new things and particularly in the mindfulness space. Whilst some of the component parts were criticised during the Den I could see how willing Zena was to listen and respond and indeed, since the Den the kits have changed dramatically to improve on sustainability and quality. From the moment you receive the box of goodies now, it has a real wow factor. I also really liked that Zena hadn’t fallen at the first knock of opening an experience business within months of the lockdown, indeed by introducing the Art Kits and online app experience she showed how “tuned in” and nimble she could be. Having worked with Zena over several months now…I have also been proved right!” Deborah added.
New Product Launch
Putting Deborah’s investment to immediate use, Zena is growing her business with the launching of a brand-new product: IlluminArty, an Artist’s Projector made for the contemporary creative at home. With IlluminArty, you can project photos of your choice onto your canvas, straight from your smartphone, making drawing out your artworks effortless.
Connect your smartphone to IlluminArty and project a photo of your choice onto your canvas board, enabling you to outline your image effortlessly before starting to paint. Designed by artists for artists, it reconfigures to be an artist’s easel, a timelapsing stand and even a stylish desk lamp, for the space-conscious modern-day-maker.
“We designed it to feel like ‘part of the furniture’, something you’d be proud to showcase at the heart of your home rather than on the top shelf or in the attic. That way, it’s easy to build creativity into your day-to-day routines, as all the tools you need are always within arms reach.” added Zena.
The new IlluminArty costs £249 and is available from the MasterPeace website at www.masterpeace.studio.