I love the way this carpenter bee is hugging his dying chrysanthemum. Pollinators and flowers need each other. It feels like they both are giving it their all. Saying goodbye is never easy. Dying is how life improves itself. We make way for the new. We give to the others in our parting.
As I painted this plump black bee, I thought about how I was attracted to scientific illustration. There was always a tug in me between art and science. Science seemed so daunting, and I was terrible at math and calculations. Art was accepting and more open, but the idea of having to count every hair or scale also seemed too OCD for me. As much as I love getting lost in minutiae and details, and I sure did with this one, I like to have some freedom to deviate. I still get lost in the process. I lose my place, can’t see what I’m looking for and make random marks, but often that is the thing that brings something to life. It’s a balancing act, sort of like life itself.