Bendigo's best creatives: Five minutes with Paula Zetlein

Inspired by a need to create and a deep fascination and connection with nature, Paula's artwork is reminiscent of historical scientific botanical sketches.

Describe yourself in 10 words or less:

Creative, driven and spontaneous!

Who are your creative influences?

There are so many and change all the time! In art I love historical botanical sketches, Margaret Preston, John Olsen, Celia Rosser and Kate Bergin. In design I love Marimekko, Orla Kiely & Lotta Jansdotter.
Paula specialises in intricate drawings of Australian botanicals

What does a typical work day look like?

After a decent amount of coffee I start my day by drawing. I used to leave drawing until the end of the day, but I found that there were so many admin jobs to do that I’d run out of time. So I made the flip to prioritise the most important part of my job. After drawing I then action customer enquiries, fulfilling orders, invoices and maintaining social media & website.

What is the thing you like most about your job?

Being creative, drawing and making! Drawing is something I need to do, and sparks joy for me, I love that my drawings & products I create also spark joy for others. I also love teaching drawing and encouraging people to continue on their creative journey.
Paula is currently working on a series of botanical drawings for Adelaide Hills Distillery

What is the best advice you’ve ever received?

Launch before your ready & network! If you wait around for everything to be perfect you will never do it or someone will beat you to it! Sometimes you can’t learn the things you need to know until you are in the learning pit going through the process. I’ve learnt so much from just getting out there and giving things a go. Doing markets, trade shows and going to launch nights of creative businesses connect you with like minded people & get those creative conversations flowing.

What are you most proud of accomplishing in your career?

Turning my passion for drawing into a business. It hasn’t been easy & it certainly hasn’t happened overnight, but it is super exciting seeing people’s reaction to what I’ve created!

What are you working on at the moment?

A series of Botanical drawings for Adelaide Hills Distillery. I have just finished 12 drawings for their gin range and am now about to embark on another 10 drawings for their next drink release.

What advice would you give to a young person who is interested in a career in the creative industries?

Follow your heart and just start chipping away at following your dream. Start gathering knowledge and experience in your interest area. Get your self out there and make connections & find a mentor in the area you are interested in. Don’t give up, failure is an essential step towards success.
Paula's drawings are available as limited edition prints

What’s your superpower?


On Sunday mornings, you can usually find me...

In bed... haha... starting my day slowly, drinking coffee and enjoying family.

Find more of my work here:

Instagram: @paulazetleinart

Facebook: https://m.facebook.com/Paula-Zetlein-Art-

Website www.paulazetleinart.com.au