Tiger!


Tiger Swallowtail 6x6

Melissa Blue Fine Art

What is it about Tiger Swallowtails? Maybe it is the size of those wings. One can almost imagine donning wings like that and soaring away over the treetops. This one is nectaring on a swamp milkweed that grows in my garden. Have you ever smelled these flowers? Mmmm~heaven.

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28 thoughts on “Tiger!

    • melissabluefineart says:

      Hi Jim~thank you. I like them too and plan to do quite a few more. I was just out in the field taking photos to work from. I’ve been keeping these canvases to 6″x6″ so I can easily do them at the farmer’s market. In the past I have incorporated butterflies into larger paintings as well, and I think I’ll do more of that.

  1. circadianreflections says:

    This is beautiful! You got the angle of that lifted wing perfectly!
    I love these big beautiful butterflies. I don’t see enough of them. Their colors are so striking with that little bit of blue on the their tails.

    I’ve never smelled swamp milkweed. I wonder if I’ve ever seen it? I’m going to look it up. I have Lantana which the little Firery Skippers, and Gulf Fritillaries like, but I haven’t had a Swallowtail in my yard sadly.

  2. Gunta says:

    Thanks to several blogs I follow I’m getting to know a bit more about flutterbyes. I’ve discovered that we have a few swallowtails along with Viceroys flitting about the new place. It seems that they like the wild blackberry blossoms. I need to grow a bit more patience to catch them with my shutter. Your image of this tiger is simply gorgeous. You’ve managed to catch their ethereal quality so well. Your title also threw me. I was expecting some large kitty-cat. Which reminds me that Eric spotted a bobcat on the new property. I may have to watch over Sissy a bit more closely than I’m used to. I also need to look up swamp milkweed. I have been trying to find a way to get some native milkweed growing down south.

    • melissabluefineart says:

      If swamp milkweed will grow there, you will love it. It does move itself around freely, though. Not a problem in my undisciplined garden but can be disconcerting! A bobcat~that is wonderful. We have them around here but I never tell people that lest they start clamoring for their eradication.

      • Gunta says:

        We have a ‘swampy’ hillside where it might take hold. Researching ways to get some seed, but may have to wait until we’ve done some brush clearing. Work on the house is top priority at the moment. We DO however have quite a few Viceroys and Swallowtails hanging around. VERY hard to catch with the camera. They don’t sit still for long enough to find them with the zoom and then focus. So far.

        As for the bobcat… my only concern is our ten pound poodle. She’s been a city dwelling couch potato lately while we’ve been renovating the house down south. The new location gives her a chance to meander around a bit and explore.

        The bobcat was seen on a slope that’s been invaded by ‘boomers’ (mountain beavers). I suspect they may have been what it was hunting. Seems the boomers have moved for now, so hoping our Sissy won’t look too tempting. Any ideas?

  3. Liz says:

    Beautiful painting, Melissa – I love the way you have captured the capriciousness of the moment – that fleeting pause of the butterfly on beautiful flowers.

  4. shoreacres says:

    I saw one of these a couple of weeks ago, high in the air, cruising around some trumpet vine. They are delightful — and so big! I tried to get a photo, but he wasn’t inclined to either come lower, or perch, so that didn’t work out. But I have the memory, and your painting evoked it immediately. I like the thought of a series — and the size is just right for a grouping of canvases.

  5. melissabluefineart says:

    When I was a monitor I used to have trouble with swallowtails. On the one hand, you’d think it would be easy to ID great big butterflies like this. But they would do the same thing~soar high up where I couldn’t get a good look at spots and stripes. Yellow tigers are so clear, though, and lovely. I’m glad you saw one even though it didn’t come down for you.

  6. Steve Gingold says:

    Lovely, Melissa. We used to get visits from these all summer, but lately not many have been by, just like the monarchs. We did have black swallowtail cats on our parsley last summer, but I don’t think any survived. It’s a tough world out there.
    I’d love finding a milkweed scented shampoo. πŸ™‚

  7. krikitarts says:

    There’s a favorite rest stop in the Minnesota prairie where we stretch our legs on the way to & from our cabin up there, and a huge patch of milkweed was in bloom when last we stopped there. The fragrance was unbelievably delightful. Hey, how about a new after-shave, too?

  8. Myriam (Myr's Bytes) says:

    Lovely painting, Melissa. Those wing angles are marvellous! Thanks for that moment of butterfliness – I shrank, grew wings and my hair-thin legs were standing on delicate pink petals. I’m not sure I’ve ever seen a swamp milkweed but I’ll be sure to take a sniff if I come across one. πŸ™‚

  9. Gallivanta says:

    That’s a delightful size, 6 x 6 inches. I haven’t ever encountered the scent of milkweed. It must be wonderful if Steve and you agree it would work beautifully in shampoo.

  10. Jane says:

    I do love this butterfly series, Melissa. One can never have too many butterflies, especially when they are painted in such a skilful way that they evoke such feelings of lightness and life. Thank you! πŸ™‚

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