Peony and Parakeet

Watercolor Girl in a Spring Garden

Watercolor painting by Paivi Eerola of Peony and Parakeet.

I have just finished this watercolor painting. It’s a continuum for this recent one:

Watercolor painting by Paivi Eerola of Peony and Parakeet.

This spring, I have been painting flowers, fruits, vegetables, vases, and pots – my inner garden – while my husband has been busy taking care of our outer garden!

I don’t intentionally paint what I see in the garden, but I am fascinated by it. Our front garden had big changes last summer so it’s interesting to see what has survived through the winter and what hasn’t. It’s a bit like when starting a painting – some details stay, and some get covered.

Watercolor painting in progress.

At the beginning of May, we got snow. We had just had a warm period but then it became really cold!

Snowing in a Japanese garden.

Fortunately, the weather has got warmer again. This morning, I walked in the garden and thought how perfect all the shapes and colors are. I imagined I am a watercolor girl in a watercolor world, translating all the beauty on a coarse cotton paper step by step.

A detail of a watercolor painting by Paivi Eerola of Peony and Parakeet.

It’s just magical when the old cherry tree blossoms in our new Japanese garden for the first time.

Cherry blossoms in a garden.

I only wish our tree would have pink flowers. But for a watercolor girl, everything is possible!

A detail of a watercolor painting by Paivi Eerola of Peony and Parakeet.

One of our flowerbeds is filled with a variety of tulips. We buy some new bulbs every autumn, and the bed gets fuller and fuller every spring.

Tulips in a garden.

I love to paint abstract shapes and then draw lines to make them flowers or filaments!

A detail of a watercolor painting by Paivi Eerola of Peony and Parakeet.

Does your garden appear in your art?

Happy Holidays from Finland

Happy, sad, deep, superficial, and recent news with holiday greetings!

Antonina by Paivi Eerola from Peony and Parakeet

The year 2018 has been a big one for me. I have rediscovered my Eastern-Finnish roots and put everything I have learned into practice to express what I love and want to cherish. This drawing called “Antonina” shows this feeling of satisfaction. It is a gift that I didn’t expect but that I dare not to give back either.

“Be the Biggest Fan of Your Art”

Artists say this all the time: “Be the biggest fan of your art.”  If you create art, you know it’s one of the most difficult things in the world. There’s always something to change, improve, take further. It’s challenging to be the biggest fan or any fan at all.

But recently, I have had this strange feeling of peace. I see flaws in my work but still, it feels enough. My drawings are more superficial and representational than I had thought they should be. But surprisingly, it’s what was needed to become a fan of my own art. 

I want to write more about all this when I have more time. I often write long posts on Facebook too. Recently, I wrote a Facebook post about belonging to the art world, and another about my journey in learning how to draw. If you don’t like me on Facebook yet, please do and join the conversation there too!

Preparing for Christmas Art Fair 

The local society of professional artists “Vantaan taiteilijaseura” has accepted me as a member. The society has a part-time worker, a gallery, a working space to rent, and a lot of events. Because most of you are not from Finland, I often work a lot alone when I am not online. As a member, I hope to get to know more local artists and attend some events as well.

This Saturday the society organizes a small sales event, and I have a table there. Even if there’s not enough space to take the biggest paintings, it has been interesting to prepare for the fair. My style nowadays is surprisingly close to the style that I had about 5 years ago. My technical skills have grown but the old decorative stuff fits really well with my current drawing style. I still have some fabrics left, many from that time, so I am taking a selection of them to go with drawings, postcards and art prints.

Fabrics by Paivi Eerola from Peony and Parakeet

Back then, I didn’t quite appreciate the point where I was. If I could speak to my old self, I would say: “Keep going, you are getting there!”

Tribute to My Bird Citronelle

A few days ago, a sad thing happened. One of my four budgies, Citronelle, died suddenly. She got flu, got weak very fast and we couldn’t save her. 

If I have to quickly name what I love and admire, I would choose peonies and parakeets. I admire their beauty and their bravery. Every spring, peonies begin their sprint to grow fast and bloom. And every morning, my little parakeets start singing and hassling like they would rule the world. The time that they both have is limited, but they make the most of it. If only we humans could follow their wisdom!

Citronelle, a drawing by Paivi Eerola from Peony and Parakeet

I made this little drawing to process the grief and to show Citronelle in the way she would have liked to be seen. She was the leader of the pack, and definitely worth the crown. She was clever, sometimes annoyingly so if you ask my other budgies, and the star of every little event she organized. We all miss her dearly.

Happy Holidays with Rich Bunnies!

I have drawn or painted very few Christmas-themed pieces, but this year I just had to do this one!

Christmas Bunnies. A drawing by Paivi Eerola from Peony and Parakeet

I got the idea of two white bunnies of a Christmas card. I liked that it had rabbits instead of reindeer (common in Finland), but the card was too simple to my style. I wanted to add a touch of luxury, and I can assure you that these two little bunnies are not the poorest ones in town!

I hope that you pamper and nurture yourself during the holidays like you would be the rich bunny of the town! See you again in 2019! Special thanks to all who have participated in my classes or bought my art in 2018, I really appreciate your support!

P.S. I am in the process of revamping my websites. Quite a lot has been done already at Paivieerola.com, but this site is bigger, and the renovation is much more challenging. It may happen that the site is unavailable for a short time after Christmas. I try to make everything go as smoothly as I can, but technology can be surprising sometimes, even for a former engineer! So if you have been planning to sign up for my classes before the new year, sign up before Christmas if you only can!

Abstract Portrait – Paint with Me!

An abstract portrait by Paivi Eerola from Peony and Parakeet. Watch the video with Paivi's tips and instructions!

Here’s a quick abstract portrait from my sketchbook, painted with acrylic paints in 45 minutes. I didn’t use any reference photos for this one but just played with the shapes.

Create an Abstract Portrait – Watch the Video!

Get tips, ideas, and inspiration for your abstract portrait. Watch the video!

Innovative Portraits – Sign Up Now!

Innovative Portraits is about discovering new paths to painting and drawing portraits. Increase artistic looseness, find ways to get the proportions with ease, add more style by using shapes and colors, and invent ideas so that you never wonder what to put in the background. >> Sign up NOW!

Innovative Portraits, drawing faces and portraits in mixed media. An online art class by Paivi Eerola from Peony and Parakeet

Innovative Portraits includes a membership from October to December in my art community Bloom and Fly. You will also get monthly live sessions and weekly feedback Tuesdays. You will receive all the material that has already been published once you sign up, including the replay of October’s live session. >> Sign up NOW!

Sneak Peeks to Innovative Portraits

In this class, you will use fewer lines and more shapes. Much easier and more expressive!

Sneek peek to Innovative Portraits - an online art class by Paivi Eerola from Peony and Parakeet.

You will choose colors to express the personality.

Sneek peek to Innovative Portraits - an online art class by Paivi Eerola from Peony and Parakeet.

You will see beauty in all ages.

Sneek peek to Innovative Portraits - an online art class by Paivi Eerola from Peony and Parakeet.

You will discover the story behind the portrait and visualize the invisible.

Sneek peek to Innovative Portraits - an online art class by Paivi Eerola from Peony and Parakeet.

You will see personality in plants, trees, or in any inanimate object.

Sneek peek to Innovative Portraits - an online art class by Paivi Eerola from Peony and Parakeet.

You will use your stash creatively.

Sneek peek to Innovative Portraits - an online art class by Paivi Eerola from Peony and Parakeet.

You will stop the fear for the bold expression.

Sneek peek to Innovative Portraits - an online art class by Paivi Eerola from Peony and Parakeet.

Innovative Portraits begins tomorrow Oct 1st Sign up NOW!

Sneek peek to Innovative Portraits - an online art class by Paivi Eerola from Peony and Parakeet.

Hoping to see you there!

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