Indigo Fun with Rosemary Mosco



Our good friend and the very talented creator of Bird and Moon Science and Nature Cartoons, Rosemary Mosco, recently partnered with The Orianne Society to raise awareness and funds for reptile, amphibian, and landscape conservation through the sale of one of her original drawings of an Eastern Indigo Snake that is AVAILABLE IN PRINT!

We sat down with Rosemary to hear a little bit more about how she came to be such a talented illustrator and where she draws her inspiration:

Orianne: Tell us a little about your background, Rosemary.

Indigo print by Rosemary Mosco.

Rosemary: I’m a naturalist, artist, and science writer. I grew up in Ottawa, Canada, where my mom taught me to love snakes from an early age – we’d flip rocks in our favorite field to find baby gartersnakes and ring-necked snakes. I took herpetology in grad school at UVM with Jim Andrews and got to see so many remarkable herps, from spring salamanders to wood turtles. I’ve spent my life working to blend art and science and help people love wildlife. It’s taken me to some interesting places. Really, though I spend most of my time writing at home, with a mug of hot tea in my hand and my two little parrots on my shoulder.

Orianne: Bird and Moon comics – very original and one of our favorite pages to follow – tell us more about how this came about?

Rosemary: I’ve loved comics since I was little. I started making cartoons in high school for the school paper. In 2004 I made a longer comic called Bird and Moon. It’s about a lonely bird who befriends the moon. I had so much fun drawing it – I was hooked. I’ve been making comics on and off ever since sometimes in partnership with scientists. Sometimes life (and grad school!) gets in the way. But I always come back to comics!

Orianne: You have an obvious passion for science and conservation, why do you feel it is so important to use your humor and illustrative talent to educate the public on these topics?

Rosemary: Nature is often really funny! I find that adding humor to a piece of information can help it spread beyond its typical audience. And so many people are visual learners, so art helps us all connect with complicated conservation topics or creatures we’ll never see in the wild.

Orianne: You have been an Orianne supporter for quite some time, are there other organizations like ours that you use your talents to support?

Rosemary: Yes! I’ve written for Audubon and Mass Audubon. I made art for t-shirts (and beer steins!) for NEPARC and stickers for the American Ornithological Society. I’ve done a lot of work with David Steen, the famous herpetologist behind @alongsidewild – expect more work from us soon! And I’ve worked with lots of other scientists and groups. Orianne Society is really close to my heart, though. I’m an enormous fan of herps.

Orianne: The Indigo drawing is absolutely incredible – can you tell us a little about how you came to draw this species and where you drew your inspiration from?

Rosemary: A couple of months ago I got to visit the Orianne Center for Indigo Conservation. The people there were unbelievably passionate and enthusiastic. I got to see so many beautiful animals, from little babies to enormous 8-foot adults. It was inspiring! At the same time, I visited an art gallery and picked up a stylebook on Art Nouveau by Alphonse Mucha. I knew I wanted to capture the indigos in that style.

The plants in the background are native to indigo habitat. They’re longleaf pines and wiregrass. I added Catesby’s bindweed to the bottom since Art Nouveau often has flowers. The whole thing is stylized but hopefully, the species are identifiable.

Orianne: Rosemary, we cannot thank you enough for your support, for sharing your work with us, and for being a passionate advocate for conservation.

Rosemary: Thank you so much for your hard work! I’m glad you’re watching out for my favorite animals.

You can purchase Rosemary’s 8 x 17 color Indigo print HERE.