The ability to paint is truely magical to us. How a series of brushstrokes on a canvas can turn into the most beautiful landscape or still life. Art really is something to be celebrated and cherished. And we would love to celebrate the artists work we carry in our stores so we have chatted with one of our newest Artists, Paula Starrs to learn just how her brushstrokes create her inspiring original artworks.

Tell us about yourself and your upbringing and what you think led you to being a creative?

I am a 46 year old artist from the Swan Hill region which is on the Murray River in the Mallee Victoria. I was born here, the youngest of 4 and we grew up on a dairy farm. We lived a very unsupervised life, riding horses and always playing with animals.
I attended a tiny school early in life as the numbers were so small, that my mum sent me at 4 to keep the school open. Teachers would come and go so we were not very academic but boy could I art and craft! I was a sensitive and quiet child and drawing was very much my comfort and I would often be praised for my work which of course made me want to do more to please. Once I completed year 12 at the local college, I went on to study a diploma in Visual Arts, majoring in photography and painting.
This led to being a photographer initially, with painting being a hobby in the background. I managed Kodak stores for many years in Adelaide, then moved back to Swan Hill to raise my boys (Alex 18 and Noah 17). I opened a successful children’s boutique which I ran for 10 years and then COVID came along. Like many.. it made me stop and reevaluate my life, so I started to paint and the paintings were selling. So I sold my business and I’m in my third year of being a full time artist. So many wonderful opportunities have come along. My proudest moment was coming top 5 in the Doyle’s award and holding a landscape exhibition in my home town.

What is your style of art, and what does your work aim to say?

My style of art borders on Impressionism, as my brushstrokes are loose and free and I’m always looking for shadows and light. I’m inspired by my surrounding mallee landscape, the river and always animals when I can.
My clients often say that my pieces make them feel and remember their upbringing or where they lived. 


Who are your biggest influences, and how do they inspire your work?

Instagram is constantly showcasing amazing artists. Some of my favourites are 
Nerida Woolley which I’m lucky enough to have a beautiful piece that my husband surprised me with at Christmas. Kelly Kondis and Esmae Barry which I also have some of their work. While studying art my favourite was Russell Drysdale.

You have a beautiful barn like workspace? Was it purpose built and why this space?

 I’m very fortunate to live on a 40 acre property with a large country garden and barn style studio. My husband and I purchased the property 4 years ago and have done a lot of work to it. My two dogs live their best life as I’m home everyday and they love snoozing while I paint. 

Is there a piece of advice that you’ve received as an artist that has helped form your work?

 Best piece of advice is something I’ve always tried to live by and it’s very appropriate when the self doubt creeps in.. “ Just Do You “ which is a simple reminder that m
You can browse Paula Starrs original artworks online or in our Toowoomba & Goondiwindi stores.