I have been away from painting for months with an unexpected disruption in my life. With that behind me now, I am really giving my attention to the bee paintings. I am finding the flowers in my work more of a challenge than the bees!
I am thinking about the risk posed to honeybees by the pesticides known as neonicitinoids... Decided to google the chemical formula - and was immediately struck by how the diagram is reminiscent of honeycomb.... a bit spooky. So I used this in my latest bee study - Any suggestions for a title??
The Honeybee Project now has 5 artists working away at their interpretation of the subject - three painters, a photographer and a printmaker. Very exciting to see it begin to come together! We are in the early stages of putting something together to show, but it is stimulating to be working with a group of artists and focusing on a very specific theme. Much could change and develop yet, but the road ahead looks like lots of fun!
Well, I have accepted that if I am going to paint bees, I am going to have to paint flowers. This is a genre that I have avoided until now. But if I want to address the issue of bees and pollination, that definitely involves flowers! So I am now painting bees and posies - and learning to like it!
I put my ear to my wintering bee hives today and was happy to hear the gentle buzz of bees in each of them. Bees do not “hibernate” - they form a cluster in the centre of the hive and take turns moving around to generate heat while the others rest. This way they keep the inside of the hive around 34 C all winter! On warm days soon they will start to take short flights for a wing-stretch and a bit of house-cleaning. I can’t wait to see them rising into the air above the hives again!
Continuing on the Honeybee theme... This is an 8 x 8 study which again grapples with the challenge of depicting bees in flight. I am working in acrylic - trying to mimic the effect of encaustics, which is a challenge in itself! Would love to be working in real beeswax (produced by my own bees, of course!) but that is not practical for what I am hoping to do here... So - I am calling the project "faux-caustics")...
I am starting to explore imagery for a project on the subject of Honeybees. As a beekeeper, I have long been fascinated with bees and concerned about the dangers that face their survival these days... Now I have to figure out how to express those thoughts and feelings in my work! A challenge, but it is going to be a fun journey!
This is the first study that captured the ethereal quality of bees in flight for me. Baby steps.... but a start!
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- as well as new work, information on my process and assorted random thoughts...