I’ve always had an interest in art and loved to draw as a child however I didn’t get back into it until later in life when I enrolled in a Visual Arts course at East Gippsland Tafe. Painting, drawing, life drawing, digital art, photography, art history, and other art-related subjects were covered in the course. I went on to gain my Diploma of Art.
My favourite medium is acrylic paint on canvas, but I often include charcoal and collage in my works that I refer to as modern gritty realism!
Before I put paint to a surface, I begin by taking photos and working out a composition. I don’t do preliminary drawings, I just map it out roughly on the canvas, block it in with paint, then refine the details. It takes me about a week to complete a painting from start to finish, and I often work on three or four at the same time. The streets of Melbourne and my immediate surroundings are a constant source of inspiration for me. The landscape (both urban and rural) is constantly changing, so I'm always photographing things that catch my eye.
I’ve love old buildings with character - weathered shopfronts, laneways, train stations, old signs with interesting fonts and typefaces, so it is not surprising that my favourite piece of Artwork is ‘City’ by Albert Tucker. I remember seeing this at the NGV.
I love Australian art, especially the aforementioned Albert Tucker, also Sidney Nolan, Howard Arkley, David Bromley, Edward Hopper and Geoffrey Smart. Other favourites are Picasso, Salvador Dali, Japanese artist, Utagawa Kuniyoshi, and Ralf Kempken. I’m a big fan of Andy Warhol’s work as well. I think he was a visionary and way ahead of his time. I’m the proud owner of a couple of Bill Young’s works and they’re a great inspiration for me. Street art also inspires me.
Music venues are also one of my favourite themes, and I've painted several of Melbourne’s iconic music venues. I have self-published four books about the Australian Blues Music scene (“Blues Portrait - A Profile of the Australian Blues Scene”) inspired by the same thing that inspires me to paint, preserving history.
I have been shortlisted for several major art prizes throughout Australia: the Fleurieu Art Prize in South Australia, the Hornsby and Paddington Art Prizes in NSW, and the Flanagan Art Prize in Victoria. In 2015/2016 I was selected as a finalist in the CityScapes competition in Florida, USA, but the highlight for me is creating special pieces that have meaning for people.
Other links: https://linktr.ee/paulinebaileyart