PAINTER OF SPORTS EVENTS AND LONDON OLYMPICS 2012
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There is a tradition of Sporting Art and Sports Portraits in Britain. Paulina carries on this tradition.
Paulina Little draws sports and social scenes of people enjoying themselves out of doors.
Paulina is a London-educated painter and printmaker, and for the last 25 years has widened her sphere of interest, becoming involved in the work of Urban Sketchers London, a group who meet to draw regularly.
In addition, events such as those held at the Guards Polo Club in Windsor Great Park, the Henley Royal Regatta, and the London Marathon, are all subjects for paintings of great vibrancy and dynamism, with the strong verticals and diagonals seen at the settings move and shift – with the intent of making abstract the essence of thrust, aggression and triumph; a distillation of frenetic activity.
‘Jamaica Beach Volleyball – Two Bikinis’ is the result of enthusiastic watching, sketching and photographing the beach volleyball seen on the beach at Ocho Rios during a recent holiday in Jamaica.
The work entitled ‘Legs – Emmanuel Mutai’ in oil, is referencing the impression of that famous runner at the end of the London Marathon.
She considers the joyful tradition of Fete Champetre painting one that she takes very seriously and the influence of Watteau and Fragonard is a consistent theme running through her oils, prints and watercolours. Also evident is the darker and more comical side seen in Hogarth’s prints and paintings.
She often plays with humorous references to the paintings of figures from past centuries, for example a portrait of a leather-clad motorcyclist will have reference to the armour-wearing figure of Darius in a painting by Veronese, transposed to a modern setting. The painting is called ‘Le Mayne searches for La Bonneville’, a play on words also. Geoff Mayne is the subject of the portrait.
An art blog has ideas and musings about art – dating from 2008. Check this BLOGGER BLOG.
PAULINA – AN ARTIST CONSIDERS THE QUESTION ‘HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN AN ARTIST?’
“I always find the question ‘How long have you been an artist’ surprising and wonder why they ask me.
If somebody knows me well, they will know that I have been painting and drawing all my life.
Somebody who was recently made redundant, and had nothing to do all day, said to me the other day ‘You are so lucky, you have a hobby’. I did not disagree but felt annoyed. Why? Because being a professional artist is not like having a hobby – it can be wonderful and it can be a real chore.
I was at school where there was no proper art teacher, nor an art room. It was a very small private school for girls in Worthing, a boarding school because my father moved around – he was in the RAF. The school was good on academic subjects but not good for supporting those who wanted to do anything else but become a secretary. I won a national competition when at school, I remember, with a magazine called ‘The Young Elizabethan’ – yes, it was that long ago!
My friends at the school were very impressed; I still have that little drawing, of a young, fashionably dressed lady.
BRIGHTON SCHOOL OF ART
From the school, on a Saturday morning I travelled by train to Brighton, to art classes run in the Brighton Art School, in a building in the Old Steine. It was wonderful there. The classes were run by art students, I think. I remember a huge painting I did in poster colours, of an Edwardian funeral procession, complete with black horses wearing black plumes. I got the information about the funeral from my grandma.
From then, it was more difficult. I went to a class in Sutton Coldfield to learn office skills for a couple of months and while there, took an art class where the teacher suggested I go to art school instead.
EALING TECHNICAL COLLEGE, EALING, LONDON
Alas, my father had to move back to London and sent me to study secretarial skills at Ealing Technical College which was interesting since we soon acquired the necessary abilities in shorthand and typing plus a bit of economics and history. However, my father was not in favour of my going to art school unless I could earn a living with this skill, so I got a job, aged 17.
SCRAP METAL MERCHANTS
It was the pits – a scrap metal merchants – where the principal at the company was a real nasty piece of work – a bully. He reduced me to tears when I made a mess of the little telephone switchboard. Luckily in those days it was easy to walk into any new job – the newspapers were full of adverts. My next job was with Hillier Parker – estate agents – near Grosvenor Square in Mayfair, not far from where the Nightingale sang in Berkeley Square!
LIFE DRAWING CLASSES
It was while I was working there that I took my first life-drawing classes in the evening, at Ealing Technical College again. In those days the men models all wore little coverings over their private parts, unlike nowadays. But then nowadays you get the idea of what people look like from huge numbers of TV programmes and films – then most girls were very ignorant of the bits of the body that are mostly modestly covered.”
ST MARTIN’S SCHOOL OF ART
I had to earn a living then, in London. I attended St Martin’s School of Art in what ever spare time I had, and really enjoyed it. My tutor was Roger Nicholson, who encouraged me to paint from my own sketches (no photographs in those days, too expensive). I also began textile design. One benefit of attending the art schools in those days was the social life, weekly dances were held in the basement with live bands, playing Trad Jazz. Jiving was all the rage, I remember. And girls wore those wide, circular skirts. I made my own clothes, and had a circular skirt made of purple felt, embroidered with hearts. Did I really have such a tiny waist? Flat ballet pumps too.