Monday, 27 January 2014

Bug Beauty

    I seem to be painting a lot of bugs lately and each have their own special beauty; some glisten with shiny iridescence like jewels while others are shiny or hairy. These characteristics make bugs fun and interesting to paint. I have a small collection of insects including some butterflies, moths, bees and beetles.
Below is a dor beetle, a type of dung beetle. They are very common; I have two in my collection. They are a bright shiny blue underneath and they do shine with hints of cobalt and violet in the light.

 I have been working on a commission of a tiny sweat bee, a Halictus rubicundus female, she has lovely ginger hairy back legs or tibias and a furry little body with white stripes on the abdomen.
I was given a specimen to work from and have enlarged it six times, my field hand lens was invaluable here. I also took two macro photographs to help get the detail. The bee is painted on a lesser knapweed , Centaurea nigra flower, a member of the Asteraceae, - the daisy family; these bees seem to favor flowers from this family.

Its hard not to get lost in these flowers, they are painted with cobalt and winsor violet from studies I made in a  previous summer.

I have also started another painting, I will let you figure out what it is.

Roll on spring!


  1. A beautiful post Claire, and lovely to see your bug paintings. The bee is particularly exquisite. And do I spy butterfly/moth wings there? :)

  2. So pretty. I enjoyed seeing hoe you painted the bee and then the flower around her. I'm thinking the third bit is a butterfly or colorful moth. Yes, please come spring!

  3. Thank you both xx it is a gatekeeper butterfly and this will end up as a sort of butterfly mosaic!