Back to Ganoksin | FAQ | Contact

Insects as Art


#1

Having read Hanuman’s post about posting (TYVM!), here’s a post that
might be marginal. It’s just so fascinating, though. I have a great
interest in the insect world - it is evolution in front of your eyes,
for one. So, lately, through a long, boring train of thought, I was
led to this site:

http://www.insect-sale.com

They are in Taiwan, and sell mounted (dead) insects of all kinds, and
also some shells. They claim, and I believe them, to have the largest
collection of insect photographs on the web - many thousands. It is
interesting as insects, of course. The reason I’m posting here is
because there are thousands of top-quality, high res pics of the most
beautiful insects and butterflies you’ll ever see (all copyrighted -
no right click). It’s like walking through a garden, but it’s insects
instead of flowers. Whether you like bugs or not, it’s a great site
just for the beauty of nature. If it were me, I might start with the
grasshoppers, then maybe cicadas or jewel beetles, and of course
there’s the butterflies… I’m not endorsing the sale of dead bugs
or not, it’s just there. I will point out that butterfly farming,
which let’s them die naturally by design, is a thriving business in
the third world… This may seem a little strange, but take a look,
you’ll see…

http://www.donivanandmaggiora.com


#2

Hi John

If you like insects then you might appreciate this enterprising
artist as she makes silver insects. Elegant Insects

http://www.elegantinsects.com/insectjewelry.html

Sandra Buchholz has done a wonderful job of recreating in silver
what nature does. If I remember correctly she has a degree in Biology
and insects. Just an admirer of beautiful work and craftsmanship.

Karen Bahr
Karen’s Artworx
Calgary, Alberta, Canada


#3

Donivan in right. Insects are beautiful, and that’s why I enjoy
making them. Mostly now I do custom insects-and lately have made a
scorpion with lapis eyes; a two inch long carpenter ant and a flea.
(Ther’re not on my website yet) I’ve just had inquiries about a
Gadfly(horsefly) and a stink bug (beautiful shape). When possible, I
like to work from preserved insects. I then spread them and mount
them in a double sided glass frame so the front and back can be
seen. I, too have a whole wall of real preserved exotic insects
instead of photos. There is a large group of insect people here in
the US also. They are collectors, and have an unbelievable amount of
I discovered a Forum, not unlike this one (except the
people are not as nice) where there are long discussions about the
fine points of insect ID. Didn’t mean to go on so long, but this is
one of my favorite topics. And thanks for the link!

Sandra
http://www.elegantinsects.com


#4

If you are drawn to insects as a source of inspiration, there is a
book that you might find irresistable, as I did: An Inordinate
Fondness for Beetles. It is a beautiful large-format book with
photographs of insects that cannot be improved upon by the jeweler’s
art-- or even equalled, in some cases.

I just discovered that there is a web site

http://www.fond4beetles.com

that goes with the book. At a glance, it isn’t as impressive as the
book, but maybe you can get a taste!

Noel


#5
I, too have a whole wall of real preserved exotic insects 

Sandra, I’m afraid I only have 3 mounted beetles, but they’re fun to
have… Nice bugs on your site, too. I’ve been looking for a tobacoo
hornworm larva pendant…

http://www.donivanandmaggiora.com


#6

Karen:Thanks for the reference to my web site, Just to set the
record stright, however, I have a Ph.D in Psychology–wish I did have
that degree in bio or entomology-it would have saved me reinventing
the wheel each time I make a bug.

Sincerely
Sandra


#7

That book is really spectacular. I used it as inspiration for my
first insect stained glass piece, The second one is a Weevil with
wonderful colors that, I happen to have in my collection. Got
sidetracked by hand problems, but hope to get back to doing more
stained glass insects. I know this is a jewelry forum – tobacco
hornworm larva pendant anyone?

By the way there are many sites for beautiful insect photos-
www.insectnet.com has a gallery of photos that are also outstanding.

Sandra


#8

Sorry Sandra

I must have mixed you up with another artist that also does bugs and
does have the Biology or similar degree. Both of you have great work
but I could only find your site bookmarked when I cleaned out my
Favorites files.

Karen Bahr
Karen’s Artworx
Calgary, Alberta, Canada


#9

Hello, Noel,

If I’m not mistaken, this is the book which my lampwork teacher uses
for inspiration for the incredibly lifelike glass beetles and insects
he makes. I saw the book in his shop and the photos are amazingly
beautiful for any kind of jewelry use.

Kindest regards,
Nancy R in Vermont


#10

Go fly-fishing sometime. The knowledge will creep up on you. Best, go
with a guide, and ask about “matching the hatch”.

I read about someone who raised caddisflies over small chips of
colored stone. In the larval stage, the insects adhere twigs and
stones to a protective thorax case. In later life-stages, the
caddises cast off that prettied-up case.

Dan Woodard, IJS


#11

Hi All,

This is the first time I have posted to Orchid. I have learned so
much from reading the postings over the years. Thanks to you all.

Insects certainly are a great inspiration for art, and have been
used in jewelry design going back over the centuries. I too love An
Inordinate Fondness for Beetles. Another favorite (but pricey) book
for insect inspiration is Cabinet of Natural Curiosities by Albertus
Seba. A fun book is Jeweled Bugs and Butterflies by Marilyn Nissenson
and Susan Jonas. Ornament Magazine has done some wonderful articles
over the years about jewelry and insects, artists who make insect
jewelry and even how actual iridescent beetle wings have been used as
jewelry historically.

My degree in entomology is long unused and much forgotten, however
my delight and wonder of the insect world has persisted. I have a
collection of insect jewelry that I treasure. Some artists who make
wonderful bug jewelry include Peggy Johnson, Nancy Daniels, Marianne
Hunter, Kiff Slemmons, and Dave and Roberta Williamson. Sandra, I
loved seeing your jewelry on the Orchid Gallery and Cynthia Downs has
some beautiful brooches using butterfly wings in the gallery. I
humbly have one bug brooch in the Orchid Gallery also. I am starting
on my “Bugs are Beautiful” series of insect jewelry. What fun!

Jeanie Pratt


#12

Check out what Ricky Boscarino does in metal regarding insects…
and really check out the workshop and the residence (particularly the
bathroom.).

If you contact him, please tell him that you heard about him through
me.

Be well, happy and successful this season,

Allen
Indigo


#13
I read about someone who raised caddisflies over small chips of
colored stone. In the larval stage, the insects adhere twigs and
stones to a protective thorax case. In later life-stages, the
caddises cast off that prettied-up case. 

HAHA! I think you just inadvertantly answered a question for me Dan.
I have noticed little bundles of tiny twigs, all neatly aligned,
adhered to various gum trees on my 60 acre property and wondered what
they were…I knew they were some sort of ‘home’, probably
temporary as I have found them uninhabited mostly!! There we are,
must look 'em up and see what else I can find out about them!!
Thanks…

:slight_smile: Kimmyg
Www.northcoastbeadmakers.com


#14

One of the best books that I have seen on this subject is “Living
Jewels”, (The Natural Design of Beetles), by Poul Beckmann.

http://www.ganoksin.com/jewelry-books/us/product/3791335280.htm

This is a large format book, 9.5" X 13.5". It has beautiful
photograps of a wide variety of beetles, most filling a full page,
many with a detail photo, also filling a full page. It is available
from Charon Kransen at charonkransenarts.com

Joel Schwalb
www.schwalbstudio.com


#15

Allen Howells recommended this link. Apparently this guy’s pretty
famous - I’d never heard of him. (Don’t tell me if I’m the only
one…). Allen just mentions it, but this is one cool site to look
at, so I’m going to point it out.

Art, jewelry, pottery, stained glass, sculpture. Make sure you take
the virtual tour, it’s a fabulous place…

http://www.donivanandmaggiora.com


#16

hi all,

i’m new here- just joined. not sure if i’m posting correctly or not!

on the subject of insects as art, someone commissioned me to set 3
preserved scarabs in a silver brooch back in the 80’s. they looked
really nice when it was finished, but it did feel a bit "creepy"
doing it!. i remember being very worried the scarabs would
disintegrate under my heavy-handed setting techniques but they proved
to be surprisingly resilient!

unfortunately i wasnt in the habit of taking photos of my work then
(way pre-the ease of digital cameras!)

hope this post somehow ends up in the right plac!

chris(topher) bailey


#17
http://www.lunaparc.com Art, jewelry, pottery, stained glass,
sculpture. Make sure you take the virtual tour, it's a fabulous
place... 

My first thought upon seeing the outside of the house was “Willy
Wonka could live here!”. But then I saw the bathroom windows, and
thought “Then again, maybe not…”. Incredible site though. If he
does all that work to the house and grounds all by himself, plus
making all the fabulous jewelry, etc., the man must never sleep!

Kathy Johnson
Feathered Gems Jewelry
http://www.fgemz.com


#18

Insecnet.com has a forum section called “What bug is this?”. Lots of
experts there will endeavor to find out for you. A picture is
necessary–either of the little critters, or perhaps of their
habitat.

Sandra


#19

I have noticed little bundles of tiny twigs, all neatly aligned,
adhered to various gum trees on my 60 acre property and wondered what
they were…

Um, you might have to look a little farther. Cadis flies only make
their little houses under the water.

Rose Alene


#20

Hello,

I have noticed little bundles of tiny twigs, all neatly aligned,
adhered to various gum trees on my 60 acre property and wondered
what they were.....

These little critters sound like what we call bag worms, which
attack juniper in this area. The larvae builds a silken bag and
incorporates bits of the tree on the outside. This protective bag is
sort of dragged along as the larvae feeds and then becomes a
chrysalis for pupation. For more info, here is a website from the U
of Kentucky

http://www.uky.edu/Ag/Entomology/entfacts/trees/ef440.htm

Judy in Kansas, where the mercury really dropped last night to single
digits F. The cat didn’t want to stay outside very long this
morning!