Friday, February 3, 2012

Flower Hill Farm BUTTERFLIES OF 2011 ~ American Painted Lady

American Painted Lady Vanessa virginiensis

The American Painted Lady or American Lady Vanessa virginiensis is another favorite butterfly of the family Brushfooted Butterflies Nymphalidae, donning large eyes. These painted beauties are most often sighted between late April and early October. They migrate south for the winter. 

If you look within the plants of Edelweiss or Pearly Everlasting in the summer you may find some of the caterpillars of the American Painted Lady
2011 was only the third year that I was able to capture one of these striking butterflies . . . so, it is rather a 'new acquaintance'. 
Sadly, I was not able to get this beauty to open its wings last year. 
I am including the photos below from my 2009 and 2010 gardens.

This American Painted Lady almost seems like a flower on this Verbena bonariensis. 
Painting in Progress

 Another 'new acquaintance' is this painting (Still in a pupa stage.) . . . that continues to grow as we come to know each other better.  You might remember it when it first began the end of November 2011 ~ A purple underpainting.


I was not able to paint most of December and January, but now I am happy to report that I am applying pigments to canvas again. Painting with vibrant colors helps keep joy alive, when outside all is white and gray with bits of dark evergreen . . . with exception to the sunrise and sunset skies. 
I have a good amount of work still left to do on this rather psychological painting. The trees are not really that close together . . . I have them placed a bit like bars . . . imprisoning the house and its occupants. The huge Rock Maples are both protectors and do appear to be somewhat threatening . . . foreboding . . . if you will. The tree's branches are intertwined . . . you can imagine the invisible roots that anchor them to the hillside are as well.

Here is a review of my favorite butterflies of 2011 so far. If you have not had the pleasure of meeting eye to eye ~ a Monarch, Eastern Black Swallowtail, a Buckeye or a American Painted Lady, I hope 2012 will be the year you make their acquaintance.  

Next time I will showcase Tiger Swallowtails. 

It is time again to fly towards Sweden and visit Katarina's Roses and Stuff . 
Much beauty and imagination awaits you there!

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