Chatfield began detailed drawings at a very early age and receive private oil painting lessons, and color theory at 14. This early instruction and understanding of color has shown itself in her work.
As she progressed technically it would be Sargent that would define economy of stroke. Manet and Whistler's subtle palette and Picasso’s fluid line-work were inspirations as well.
As she moved into abstraction she was heavily influenced by Gorky, and Guston's whimsy, Diebenkorn, Kline, dekooning Rothko and de stëal 's drama.