Les Papallones

foil, acrylic, collage, gel pen on w/c paper

Taking just a bit of a break from chickens. . .this art journal piece was a demo for the Petaluma Arts Association earlier this month which I finished yesterday.  It’s not really possible for me to do a complete demo of an art journal painting beginning to end while people are watching. There has to be that quiet space for the meaning to come and bring it to a finish.

I was going through my travel brochures from Spain and found these beautiful illustrations of the butterflies in a national park I’d visited.  Butterflies is a pleasant word, but papallones literally bounces and dips like these iridescent creatures.  I did a little internet research and discovered that the Greek word for butterfly is psyche! Well that got me thinking about what the butterfly effect is on our psyche.

Les papallones, transformation, beauty and joy.  Ephemeral beauty and joy.  The kind we chase after and grasp for, while it eludes us, fluttering just out of reach.  We get transience when what we wish for is permanence.

The substance of the world is change, of our thoughts is quicksilver.  Fly through each doorway as it opens.  Do not tarry, longing for happiness to stick like gum on your sidewalk.  Watch it cavort, always in new disguises. Be light as a butterfly. The ephemeral is the Real.



  1. hello Susan~ i simply had to stop by and say that I dearly love this art journal piece. it’s beautiful. i’ve been looking at & enjoying your work for some time now. thanks for sharing such wonderful pieces of art. hope all is well.


  2. Hi Susan,
    Thank you so much for taking the time to send this beautiful piece that you did while sharing your ideas with our organization. I am so touched by what you are able to create over and over again. I have enjoyed watching your videos on your website, as well. You are truly an inspiration to me.

    peggy sebera
    president, Petaluma Arts Association


    1. Peggy, I enjoyed my time with your wonderful group. I felt inspired back by the interest shown in the creative process and somehow it got channeled into this piece-a kind of group alchemy.


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