Pauline Bellamy grew up on the Hauraki Plains in the North Island and was educated at Hauraki Plains college and Thames High School. She received her Diploma in Graphic Art from the Auckland Technical Institute in 1968 before working in advertising as an illustrator in Auckland and Hamilton. A move to Queenstown and an interest in tramping fuelled a desire to see more of the natural world and to begin painting. Travels around Asia and Europe were followed by years of isolated living in St Bathans, Central Otago. Her only connection with the wider arts community was through short trips to the Kurow Summer Arts Schools and the painting tutorage of J.S. Parker in Queenstown and Invercargill. Since that time she developed her passion for the landscape of Central Otago. Her work is influenced by NZ landscape painters especially Toss Woolaston. She also follows a life-time interest in figurative painting and life drawing.
Pauline moved from Central Otago to Dunedin in 1990 to Macandrew Bay near Dunedin where she works with husband, John, along with sons Manu Berry who is establishing himself as a woodblock printmaker of note, and younger son Max Bellamy who is studying at the Dunedin School of Art. Well known as a plein air landscape painter, she is equally at ease with figurative work and portraiture, and uses many mediums, from oils to watercolours to dry point and zinc plate etchings . She has also published two books on St Bathans, one of drawings and one recently of etchings. She has this year completed a large commission of etchings for a Queenstown development and mounted a successful exhibition of etchings of people, places, and activities around Dunedin, at the Cleveland living Arts centre. She has been exhibiting for more than 20 years and has work in national and worldwide collections.