Cricket x Charcoal

Cricket in itself is an art. Combine that with charcoal and the two go in hand like bat & ball. Step forward Paulette Farrell. Beautifully combining the two to capture flowing motions of the beautiful game, from a desperate swinging bat to a cartwheeling stump.

Based in Chesire, England, Paulette is a professional artist who has had her work featured on the front cover of 'Sport Liberated' and in 'All Out Cricket'. No mean feat.

We caught up with Paulette to pick her brains...

What is it about cricket that you enjoy working with?
I've always loved cricket since I got cheap tickets to watch England vs Australia in Adelaide when I was backpacking in my 20's.  When my children started playing, in order to while away the hours watching, I used to bring a sketch book with me.  At that time I worked in pencil and ink, which I still do for quick sketches.  Whilst doing so I began to notice the abnormally twisted shapes that batsmen & bowlers get into, particularly the hands & arms which sometimes end up the complete wrong way round.  This was challenging and asked questions constantly of your view of perspective & proportion.  I love the challenge still of a particularly unusual cricket figure.

How long does a piece take to produce?
I get asked this question a lot.  I don't tend to sit down and work at a piece from start to finish so it usually takes 2-3 days. I did challenge myself to complete a drawing in a day and was pretty exhausted by the end of it.

Why do you choose charcoal as your medium?
Charcoal gives great flexibility and allows movement to be expressed as a pull across the paper or a flick of the stick.  There are plenty of other mediums that also show movement well, such as watercolour, however it always gives me a great sense of satisfaction that I can complete my drawings simply with a stick of wood.

Finally, do you have a favourite piece from your collection?
I like 'Swept Away' because I can remember finishing it and then deciding to put red on the pad.  I can still see my hand hovering over the drawing with the red pastel knowing that I could ruin it so easily.  I decided to go for it and it turned out really well. However, my favourite has to be 'The Final Wicket' - its such a key point in a cricket match when the final wicket falls and this drawing captures the whole body language and the drama of the situation perfectly.

To see more of Paulette's stunning work, visit her site.