Apis Mellifera

I became a hobby beekeeper shortly after I began working in encaustic. My thought was that I would be able to collect wax for my paintings. I soon realized I needed a lot more wax than my few hives could produce. Nevertheless I quickly learned to love having honey bees in our garden and became more and more fascinated by the life cycle of this social insect. I knew eventually I would do a series of paintings on bees and beekeeping. I didn’t know what it would look like though until I started working on it this past year.
I wanted to show the intensity and pulsing life force of a hive. A hive, made up of thousands of bees, acts like one organism. Each hive has its own character. Some are lazier than others, even under the same conditions. The hive communicates to its various parts through dance, taste, smell and touch. As with so much in life the more I have learned about bees the more mysterious and wonderful they become.