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‘Six Bumblebees’, Oil on Canvas, by Andrew Tyzack


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‘Six Bumblebees’, oil on canvas, by Andrew Tyzack

Joan Eardley: Happy 2013 from Bees in Art


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Beehives, Approaching Storm, c.1950's. Oil on Board, by Joan Eardley

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Lucas Cranach: Cupid stung by bees

Cupid Complains to Venus

‘Cupid complains to Venus’ by Lucas Cranach the Elder, oil on board

Lucas Cranach The Elder's painted 'Cupid Complaining to Venus' around 1526. Cupid is depicted stealing honey from a bees nest in a tree, being stung by the irate bees and complaining to his mother Venus, the goddess of love, who stands exquisitely by and chastises Cupid: 'There's never sweetness without pain'.

A honeybee will sting an intruder if it perceives a threat, this is a defensive mechansim. Once the bee has stung the intruder an alarm pheronome is released and alerts other bees from the hive. They may also sting. A bee's
sting is a modified ovipositor and during the act of stinging, bee venom is injected into the intruder through the sting. In humans this results in pain and itching, and motivates the intruder to flee the vicinity. The bees have then successfully defended their home.

Robbing wild honeybees of their honey, as Cupid does here, would almost certainly result in angry bees and stinging. Sometimes death may also result from a bee sting, this is called
anaphylactic reaction or shock. Honeybees often target the eyes of their disturber, apparently attracted by their movement. A sting in the eye is intensely painful (as the author can testify) and any attack of the eyes causes panic. In such a situation Cupid would see the disturbed bees fly towards him and here them buzzing angrily. He would experience immediate pain as the bees stung his flesh. The ensuing pain, panic and threat to his vulnerable parts, would cause Cupid to desire to flee. Later Cupid's stings would redden, swell, remain painful, and become itchy: along with Venus' chastisement, a lasting reminder of his theft.

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Nature Blog Network

The Strange Effect of Light by Mark Rowney

The Strange Effect of Light

The Strange Effect of Light by Mark Rowney

Mark Rowney’s painting The Strange Effect of Light can now be seen at The Biscuit Factory in Newcastle-Upon-Tyne, UK.

The Strange Effect of Light
The Strange Effect of Light (detail) by Mark Rowney

The Strange Effect of Light

There are moments when one’s eyes become adjusted to the light that we see much more than first appear. 'The strange effect of light' represents such a moment.The beautiful creatures that dance around us at night are always there but only seen when our own light attracts them.

The original painting 'The Strange Effect of Light'' was painted in acrylics on birchwood panel.


"My influences are the bees that sting me, the midges that bite me and the birds that sing so sweetly. I was born in 1962. With a stick and a pair of wellies I fought many battles in the hayfields and moors of Northern England.

I grew up somewhat whilst being educated at
St Martins School of Art in London, after which I was lucky enough to work for many of my favourite publishers, doing art work for Penguin Books, the Radio Times, Homes and Gardens and various BBC publications.

I moved to New York and lived in very small apartments, producing work for the
New York Times, Time Magazine and Travel and Leisure. While in America I became interested in leather work and started producing products for the fashion designer Paul Smith on 5th avenue. A fantastic way to meet models.

Life moved on and so did I. Several months spent in an Indian factory designing embroidered soft furnishings. What a beautiful and horrible place.

For many years now I have been living back in the lovely Durham dales where I pursue my love for nature in contemporary art, occasionally I dust off my wellies and sharpen my stick.
" Mark Rowney

Nature Blog Network


Gorst & Bombus by Anna Kirk Smith has been sold

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Mark Rowney joins Bees in Art

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Greg Poole joins Bees in Art

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