Born on 22 December 1933 in Chalfont St. Peter, Buckinghamshire, Keith Francis Arnold Beal grew up in Potters Bar, Hertfordshire. After the Second World War, he was sent to Sweden in 1948 to gain strength, staying there for the better part of a year. His formative years were spent in NW London, where he went to school, and Hamstead, where he explored his interest in painting.
In 1955 Beal spent a year in Paris, aiming to develop his painting skills. On returning to England he found quick success, having an exhibition in a gallery in Bond Street and selling out on the day. Beal has remained actively interested in painting throughout his life. Don Quixote by Cervantes has been a recurring inspiration for his paintings.