When I first saw Damien Hirst’s and Lori Precious’s butterfly art, I was both incredibly inspired and saddened by it, the gorgeous, vibrant iridescent hues that one would only see in the natural world if you happened to be lucky enough to catch a glimpse of a butterfly fluttering by. But I could never justify killing so many beautiful butterflies for the sake of my own art. Apparently, Damien used about 9000 butterflies for one piece! I got to thinking how I could try to come close to achieving a similar effect using just oils. Gazing at his beautiful pieces made me think of kaleidoscopes. I didn’t have a real kaleidoscope lying around – you know, those colorful cylinders that would turn any image into a riot of pattern and color…. So I reached for the next best thing – an app! There were a few available on the Apple app website, and I chose one aptly called “kaleidoscope” which turns your iPhone camera into one, and you can snap pictures of whatever you aim it at. I figured the next best things to butterflies are flowers, so I snapped a few in my backyard. That was the easy part. For me the real challenge will be sketching out the perfect, repeating geometric patterns, and painting in my beautiful blooms. No, it’s not going to be a beautiful piece of iridescent butterfly art, but I will sleep well knowing no creatures were harmed in my creative process! Wish me luck!