About the Artist
I am a Finnish-American artist from Ann Arbor, Michigan. I began drawing when I was three years old and have always loved color. My father, architect, Eino Kainlauri, inspired me to become an artist. I have a BFA with a major in printmaking from the University of Michigan.
While in college, I spent a magical summer in Northern Finland at the home of Elsa Montell-Saanio, an internationally known weaver, who captured the amazing colors of the Nordic landscape in her tapestries. She and her family lived in harmony with nature; we went mushroom hunting and ate wild salmon from the river. It was a wonderful experience!
That summer, with Elsa’s encouragement, I began to paint wildflowers with watercolors. I spent the next summer in New Mexico, and when I returned home to Michigan, created a series of semi-abstract lithographs about the essence of the changing colors and forms of the mountain landscape.
It took me four years to paint like Raphael, but a lifetime to paint like a child. Pablo Picasso
After a 35-year hiatus, filled with raising a family and work in another field (law!), I became an artist again simply because it is fun! When I began to draw again, I felt an inner light and childlike joy. I strive to keep my art simple, vibrant and fresh.
Oh, the places you’ll go! Dr. Seuss
Art, like travel, involves exploration and seeing with new perspectives. Part of my journey has learning the French language, which I studied in France at the University of Caen. What an adventure! Naturally, I have always combined my interest in art with my travels. During this and other trips to France, I visited places where Monet painted: spectacular Étretat on the Normandy Coast and his glorious garden at Giverny. I also visited Provence, where other Impressionists and Post-Impressionists worked. I am continually inspired by these artists’ ability to capture ever changing light and nature’s colors. Recently, I have been fortunate to have painted plein-air on Italy’s Amalfi Coast, and visited marvelous museums and architectural wonders in Rome, Barcelona, and London. I am delighted to share my travel stories and musings about art and life in my Blog.
Nature always wears the colors of the spirit. Ralph Waldo Emerson
In recent years, I have worked mostly in pastels. I have the eye of a photographer, which gives my work a photographic feel. I love color and strive to portray the colorful nuances of nature. I love spending time in gardens and natural environments, immersed in their beauty.
Featured on this website are “portraits” of irises and flowers from the Golden Gate Botanical Gardens in San Francisco. Upcoming are landscape paintings from some amazing places I have discovered, in Europe, the California Coast, and even my own back yard!.
I am a member of Iowa Artists and the Iowa Pastel Society.