I have a love for Lara Croft and this is something you'll find in Paula as well. This image from Tomb Raider - Legends was the first one, that influenced me in creating my main character.
But while Lara is kept strictly "clean" in her sexuality, my Paula has a different history. She is a pained soul, a woman who were raped as a girl and who has her own demons to fight. I've read a lot of material about the Civil Wars and crimes against humanity happening in today's Central Africa. To create a more suitable, more cleaner version out of it, felt wrong.
This former rape is also one of the reasons, why she prefers animals, especially wild animals and why she seeks to protect them. Being a veterinarian is the other part of my Paula, which has its roots in another media. When I was about four years old I was enthrilled by a character in one of my favorite TV-shows: Daktari's daughter... Paula by name.
And like in that old TV show I put Paula in the middle of a team - only this time she's the one in charge.