Thursday, April 23, 2015

Butterflies for Earth Day

For Earth Day, I decided to celebrate by spending the afternoon sketching in my favorite indoor rain forest, The Cockrell Butterfly Center .

Photo Credit Andy Hemingway

Unfortunately, I failed to realize that a few hundred grade school children would also be celebrating in my 'secret' sanctuary. . . It turned out to be one of my favorite visits ever. How quickly you forget what its like to be a young explorer, especially in a place like the Butterfly Center. The lush landscape is enhanced by winding paths, a 50 ft waterfall that ends in a cave, an orange iguana named 'Charro', and of course, hundreds of fluttering butterflies swooping from flower to flower.

Ferns next to the cave

In the Cave at the bottom of the path

Looking up

As I sat on one side of a bench along the path to sketch, I was constantly being engaged by curious passersby. It's funny to take in the different reactions to live drawing. Some stand a few feet away inconspicuously starring at what you're doing, other brave children come up close to view the work in progress and give a small critique. My favorite interaction of the day?:  One little boy very seriously asked if monarchs were poisonous, to which I definitively answered, 'No,' and then he ran away, apparently satisfied with my authority. I look forward to learning more about these graceful creatures over the next year as any other questions would currently be fielded.
A Sketch of the Butterfly Center 4-22-2015 4PM

Enjoy the Outdoors! xo The Bayou Botanist

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