Peony and Parakeet

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!

24 thoughts on “Happy Holidays from Finland

  1. So sorry to hear about your loss; it is always hard to loose a beloved pet. Your blogs always make me stop to think. For me right now it is hard to get past the learning curve of making art. Your words encourage me to keep trying. I have signed up for your newest course and am anxious to get started. The last one I took helped me so much. Hope the holidays are merry and safe for you and thanks for bunnies!

    1. Cindy, thank you! There’s always more to learn in art. In general, the more experienced you are, the more you realize there is to learn!

  2. I’m so sorry to hear that your little Citronelle passed, my heart goes out to you.
    I hope you show us pictures of your art table and sale. Best wishes for that event!
    Merry Christmas!

  3. My condolences on your loss. Our little pals are the best and I am sure you miss your Citronelle. It is interesting to hear how your art has, in a way, come full circle and I am glad to hear you have peace in this.

  4. Lovely tribute to your little bird friend, who (I am sure) is fluttering and soaring ecstatically on the other side…
    And thank you for your reflections on your artistic journey. Very inspiring!
    Merry Christmas!

  5. Oh Paivi, I’m so sorry this happened to you and your family. I bet her birdie friends are a bit lost without the Queen Citronelle.
    Your tribute to her is lovely and I’m thrilled you shared your bunnies too. You’ve definately owned your art. Happy Holidays, Cynthia and Jada kay nine.

  6. Your drawings are beautiful!! They are so full of detail. I love that, but have a hard time doing it myself! I guess I need to look to these drawings as inspiration!! Keep up the wonderful work and have a very Merry Christmas!!

  7. So sorry about Citronelle. I love your wisdom relating to our own finite time on this earth and the challenge to make the most of it! Your comment on the gift of peace towards your art is also so appropriate as the attaining or your peace has in turn been given to your students – especially me! Thank you!

  8. Paivi, I am so sorry to hear about your beloved Citronelle.
    Pets have a way of endearing themselves into our hearts and the memories staying there forever.

    Rochelle Zee

    p.s. Love the bunnies.

  9. I too love parakeets and it is so hard when they go, your tribute picture to her is so beautiful and captures her personality so well, I am so happy for your art successes this year and thank you for sharing them with us as they inspire me so much, i love the bunnies and your inktober selection of art was truly amazing, very happy holidays to you and your family i will be looking forward to more art adventures with you next year.

  10. Your tribute to Citronelle is beautiful. My condolences on your loss, I bet her pals are missing her and I know you are too. I love the bunny’s too. Merry Christmas to you and your family Paivi.

  11. I really like your newer more representational style- there is still that really cool and abstract quality in your drawing, but for me, there is more to grab onto and be curious about. Good for you tube open to change in your expression!

    1. Thank you, Stephanie! I combine abstract with representational, and it feels like you really understand what I am aiming for: easy to look but also multi-layered so that there’s more to discover!

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