Sketchbook Stories :: Paul Brent

I have yet to meet Paul Brent in person, but have been following his work for quite sometime now and was excited when I learned that he was interested in be featured in my Sketchbook Stories Series. So I am happy to share with you Paul’s Sketchbook Story today.

Paul’s art work is recognizable worldwide and has been licensing his images since 1988.  While Paul’s creative reach spans a wide range of styles he is best known for his watercolors of coastal life and often referred to as America’s best know coastal artist. He currently has licenses his designs to over 80 companies on products such as handbags, ceramic ware, apparel, stationery, rugs, and kitchen textiles. His work has work has graced the shelves of big box retails like Lord and Taylor, Macys, Dillard’s, JC Penney’s, Kohl’s, and Target.

On top of all of this, Paul is also actively gives back to his local community and the Arts and planning organizations in the state of Florida. 

Here is Paul’s Sketchbook Story ::

PB: I began my career as an artist after I moved to Florida in 1969.  I was intrigued by the beautiful beaches and the wildlife, the landscapes and the vernacular architecture of the region.  I began painting and selling my originals in 1976 and by 1988 I began my career in art licensing. Over the years I began collecting vintage souvenirs of Florida since, in a way, I was creating some of the next generation of images that visitors to the beach would take home and remember their vacations.

PB: One collection that was beginning to grow was my collection of flamingo figurines from the 50’s and 60’s.  There apparently were many different molds but the all maintained the same stylized manner and color combination while retaining their individual uniqueness.  At the time I began this idea of a piece of artwork featuring this collection I was working with Seabrook Wallcovering to create books of wallpaper border and sidewall.  I thought this would make an outstanding wallpaper cording set and began sketching various figurines from my collection.  

PB: As I worked with them I found that to create variety and yet sameness, the key to a great wallpaper design, I had to alter the drawings from the originals. After coming up with six suitable positions for the flamingos, I sketched these in front of a created drape as they might have been displayed on a boudoir shelf.  I then painted the scene in watercolor.  I titled the design “Flamingo Memories”.

PB: The wallpaper was created and sold by Seabrook in their book, Paul Brent’s Postcards from Paradise.   The design was also considered for resort handbags by Sun ‘n Sand and the fabric swatches were created in several color ways.  Eventually, however, this design was cut from the line as other designs that I created were deemed to be stronger for the marketplace.  

PB: However, “Flamingo Memories”, remains one of my favorites. I think that quite often artists create pieces that they personally like only to see them languish in their portfolios or become under used selections in their repertoire. It makes you want to say to manufacturers and consumers alike, “You are crazy not to want this one”.  While not my best selling design it is still one that I love.



Paul’s Art Licensing Story

Here’s where you can find Paul ::

website ::
    shop ::

  1. Anne McFarland Brown

    I was fortunate enough to work with Paul Brent when I worked for Seabrook Wallcoverings years ago! He is so talented and such a pleasure to create with!!

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