What stories define you as an artist, and how could they inspire you to move forward?
“Satumaa” is a Finnish word that’s something like “fairytale land.” This painting is only 15 x 15 cm!
I call these miniature pieces attic paintings. Here’s the story behind them.
When I was a child, I dreamed about running a shop. My main interest there was in product development. I wanted to design things and offer an attractive selection. We lived in a wooden house with a big attic, and I established my shop there. It was called “Päivin puikko” – Päivi’s Needle and had a modest selection of hand-crocheted things.
I remember the joyful sound of footsteps on the staircase when my two sisters came to visit. They were a lot older than me and had coins with them too. When they admired the little handmade items on the table, the feeling of acceptance ran through me. One sister grabbed a long chain and asked how much it was. “Twenty pennies,” I said. “But this is so long,” said the sister, ” you worked hard for it, I give you fifty.” Sold!
Stories That Define Us
The stories where we experience big feelings define us. I realized that when I tried to figure out how much I have to raise the prices of my paintings. It was necessary as I have grown as an artist, and the general prices have come up too. But a little child in me said: “Don’t!”
“Why,” I asked.
“Because your paintings are already too expensive for my shop in the attic,” she whispered.
And yes, I couldn’t imagine selling my big paintings in that little corner. Yet, I wanted to have something for her too.
“Here’s what we do,” I said to the child. “I will raise the prices, but I will paint some small studies for you, only 150 EUR each.”
And that’s how these miniature paintings were born.
I call these attic paintings. The size is only 15 x 15 cm, and they are born from left-over paints. They are the same high-quality oil paints that I use for bigger pieces, but I often have leftovers on the palette after a painting session.
I am now much more comfortable with the higher prices when I have something for the attic – and for gift shops too!
The English word for “Valkovuokko” is “wood anemone.”
“Mansikkapaikka” is “a strawberry place” in English. I was thinking about wild strawberries here.
Mansikkapaikka is inspired by Edelfelt’s painting Ahomansikoita.
I like to paint sceneries that are overly romantic and full of fantasy.
Satumaa was inspired by an older painting called “Luvattu maa – Promised Land.”
Promised Land was so much fun to paint that I wanted to repeat the idea of using a limited selection of shapes and expressing plants traveling toward the light.
Attic Paintings – Expansion of Style and Love for Plants
I placed “Mercury Temperatures” with the attic paintings to see how the small ones go with the bigger ones.
My love for plants and yearning for nostalgia and fantasy are well presented in both, I think!
My husband and I are enthusiastic about plants, especially decorative ones. Our home is like a flower shop now when I have got some bouquets for my birthday and when orchids are blooming.
When I think about the shop in the attic, I wonder how I could not see its influence earlier. The stories that define us can prevent us from growing. But the stories can also be the key to solutions that enable growth and change.
What do you think?