Butterfly Day


The Art Junction held it’s second Family Art Day on March 31, 2012 with the theme of Butterflies.

Families had the opportunity to come together to create together.

Butterflies are a wonderful symbol of Spring and the transformation that is taking place in the environment around us during this season.

A butterfly is a mainly day-flying insect  which includes the butterflies and moths. Like other holometabolous insects, the butterfly’s life cycle consists of four parts: egg, larva, pupa and adult.

Butterflies have large, often brightly coloured wings, and conspicuous, fluttering flight. Butterflies comprise the true butterflies (superfamily Papilionoidea), the skippers (superfamily Hesperioidea) and the moth-butterflies (superfamily Hedyloidea).

Butterflies like the Monarch will migrate over long distances. Some butterflies have evolved symbiotic and parasitic relationships with social insects such as ants.

Some butterfly species are pests because in their larval stages they can damage domestic crops or trees; however, some species are agents of pollination of some plants, and caterpillars of a few butterflies (e.g., Harvesters) eat harmful insects.

Culturally, butterflies are a popular motif in the visual and literary arts.

When the butterfly larva is fully grown, hormones are produced. At this point the larva stops feeding and begins “wandering” in the quest of a suitable pupation site, often the underside of a leaf.

The larva transforms into a pupa (or chrysalis) by anchoring itself to a substrate and moulting for the last time. The chrysalis is usually incapable of movement, although some species can rapidly move the abdominal segments or produce sounds to scare potential predators.

The pupal transformation into a butterfly through metamorphosis has held great appeal to mankind. To transform from the miniature wings visible on the outside of the pupa into large structures usable for flight, the pupal wings undergo rapid mitosis and absorb a great deal of nutrients. Let’s see how the creative process is similar to the metamorphosis a butterfly endures.

Participants first painted coffee filter paper which, after drying, transforms into the butterfly wings.

While awaiting the drying process, families had the opportunity to create another type of butterfly.

Employing a technique called a “blotto panting”, families  could create another butterfly.

Blotto painting is a painting made by applying tempera paint onto one side of a sheet of paper, then folding the paper and pressing the two sides together.


Like an inkblot, a blotto painting is apt to be symmetrical and nonobjective. Making one is largely an aleatoric act — leaving much to chance.

Although the concept of symmetry is used in creating half of the butterfly design, much is left up to creative chance or a happy accident.

This project reflects much of the mystery of the creative process…we never quite know what the final results of a creative experience will foster.

This makes a blotto painting a transformative project, much like the pupa becoming a butterfly.

The next step in returning to the 3D butterfly project is to select a plastic bug body and a flexi stem for the antennae and to then put them together.

The final step in transforming the wings is to cut the coffee filter in half and the half shape into a rectangle.

The very last step in creating the wings is to create a thin fan fold from the rectangle shape and insert it into the bug body to create a 3D butterfly.

One of the goals in having a Family Art Day is to allow families the opportunity to create together.

We all have the desire to create something, and in our post-modern society there seem to be few opportunities to come together and create together.

We have many examples around us of the effects of the break-up of the family and community.

It’s time to come together and make a creative, transformitive change in our community.

When various ages work together, unity creates community.

Seeing generations create together passes on traditions and knowledge and understanding of where one lives.

We are not meant to create alone.

We were meant to work as a community, passing on our knowledge as well as learning from others, no matter what their age.

The community is the web of life that inextricably embraces, defines, and empowers children and adults alike. -Peter London

I hope you can join us for future classes, events, gallery exhibitions and creative opportunities to creatively transform our community.

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