One of the teachers I work for is currently on the butterfly section of science. She was gracious enough to let me take a few shots. I also got to help set up the butterfly habitat and tape the chysalises to the top of it. Some days I can't believe they pay me to do my job! So without farther ado, I present the lifecycle of the painted lady butterfly. Well, part of it anyway.
J-Formation: The caterpillar goes into this shape just before shedding it's skin and going into the chrysalis form. I thought it was dead. I always think insects are dead in their pupal or pre-pupal form. I learn a lot on my job.
Here the caterpillar is in the middle of transforming into the chrysalis stage. I was working away and I look up 20 minutes later, and he's half done. So obviously, he's not dead. That was cool because I've never seen a caterpillar change over before.
This is a fully formed chysalis. The more I look at it, the more I can see the caterpillar that once was and some attributes of the butterfly that will be. Very cool.