Butterfly Vacation

Mercedes Padró is a graphic designer and illustrator based in Illinois. With a paintbrush in hand, she creates whimsical and vivid pieces that visualize the world as she sees it. Padró describes her art as “quirky perfectionism with a Latin twist.”

Padró’s Sketchbook introduces a welcome burst of joyful colors to the winter season. “Initially I visualized a monarch butterfly and their flight to Mexico, but I decided to take liberties with the color palette to push the visual realm,” she tells Zócalo.

Gouache is Padró’s primary medium. For this migration series, she …

Why Migrant Butterflies Are Dying | Zocalo Public Square • Arizona State University • Smithsonian

Why Migrant Butterflies Are Dying

Border Policies, Corporate Greed, and Political Dysfunction Hurt Monarchs and Humans Alike

In July, the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) added the monarch butterfly, Danaus plexippus plexippus, to its Red List of Threatened Species, a recognition that the insect’s ongoing …

The Bug That Had the World Seeing Red

How a Mesoamerican Insect Created the Globe's Most Coveted Color

Once there was a color so valuable that emperors and conquistadors coveted it, and so did kings and cardinals. Artists went wild over it. Pirates ransacked ships for …