Paula Wirth was born in 1971, in Oakland, California. From an early age, she was especially interested in drawing faces and figures. As an art and music student of Rice University in Houston, Texas, she created a series of life-size sculptures of adults and children, as well as a comprehensive portfolio of photographic portraits and figure studies.
After completing her education at Rice, Paula spent a number of years in commercial photography and photojournalism, covering a diverse range of events - from Presidential political gatherings to outlandish fashion shows. Interested in science and human physiology, her next professional adventure found her working as a medical illustrator and photographer for the University of Texas Medical School.
Before relocating in December 2000 to Vancouver, BC, Paula worked as a creative director and illustrator for IBM Research in San Jose, California. While there, she developed and designed international web sites and online magazines.
Paula spent several years in Vancouver, BC, studying for a graduate degree in Fine Arts (MFA) at the University of British Columbia. She taught studio art foundation classes in drawing, painting and printmaking, as well as training and teaching students in digital video, graphics, web design and online curriculum development. While in Vancouver, she created a series of black and white brush drawings of people in local coffeehouses, Behind the Cup.
She now lives in the San Francisco Bay area. She spent a year teaching advanced graphic design (Digital Design 2) and fine art classes. She currently works as a web and graphic designer and instructor.
Her current fine art work combines drawing and painting, representing the figure with color and movement. Her influences include: Chinese and Japanese painting and printmaking, the use of paper scrolls, and the tradition of street sketches. Her work investigates the role of the flâneur/flâneuse in the practice of observing and documenting daily modern life through drawing and photography.
Her current Flickr addiction has her documenting the city, from old signs and buildings to old-timey music events. She covers vintage illustration (and other treasures) on her blog, A Damn Fine Product.