Bumble Bee – Pencil Sketches

honey-beeThis morning it is drearily overcast. A bit of fresh snow fell overnight, and the temperature is -5C. The Car Guy left for work at 7:30 AM, and was back home at 8:42 AM, having only got half way to the office before deciding to come home – traffic on the freeway was at a near standstill.

It is not like the roads were bad, but it is a fact of life in our part of the world that a fresh snow throws all the Worker Bees into a tailspin.

Worker Bees – that sparked the idea for this blog post. To start it off, I thought I would show you a poem and the attached art work from a Grade 1 class assignment I did. I didn’t make up the poem. I just had to copy it into my scribbler, then draw an appropriate illustration.

I don’t remember what I knew about bees at the time. Maybe we learned something about them in class. My drawing skills had taken me beyond stick figures, and I could sketch a reasonable impression of a bee, but I didn’t seem to know how to draw a dress.

For the next many years, I didn’t pay much attention to what a bee really looks like. Then I bought a macro lens for The Car Guy’s camera.  It opened up a whole new world of little things made to look big!


This is the Hunt’s Bumble Bee (Latin Name: Bombus huntii). It is a beautiful fuzzy yellow critter with a rusty orange stripe and black rear end!


My drawing skills have not progressed much since Grade 1, but my computer skills have. Photoshop Elements let me turn the bee photo into a drawing.

colored drawing

But, I wanted to colour my drawing, and with just a bit more computer wizardry, my bee was transformed!

Enough fun for today! I have to get ready to make a trip to the big city to visit the dentist. Hope all the worker bees are safely in their hives when it is time for me to navigate the freeway!

33 thoughts on “Bumble Bee – Pencil Sketches

  1. Hi,
    I love your grade 1 drawing, that is unreal that you have still got this, I am impressed.

    The close up shots really bring everything to life, especially the colours in some of the animals, a beautiful photo, and I love the drawing, such amazing software out now.

    You mentioned your temp. was -5C, here where I am it is 38C or just on 100F, 😀


    1. Hi Mags – Yes, I still have a booklet I did in Grade 1 – counting skills. Photo software is really wonderful, and I am enjoying the process of altering photos.
      The temperature here feels more like -13C because of a strong north wind blowing in from the Arctic. But you know, I think it is easier to dress for the cold than it is to dress for the heat!


  2. I think your drawing skills at age six were a considerable lot better than mine are even today! Somehow my sister (an artist) took all the drawing genes our family pool had to offer and I was left with nothing but words to try to capture my world….poor me…but I digress again…love your blog and hope you had a good checkup at the dentist…have I told you how much I DON’T like going to dentists? Well I don’t. But I go…sometimes…when I have to…although I don’t want to…sucks to be grown-up and have to make the correct decisions. 🙂


    1. Hi Sylvia – I suppose drawing skills are not all genetic, but I have to agree that some people are a lot more gifted at it than others! Same with word skills.
      The dentist says I don’t need anything done right now, but I have a few candidates for future intervention. The rest of the appointment was for a cleaning, and I really don’t enjoy those at all!


    1. Hi Amanda – I expect your mind works like mine – it doesn’t take much to send it off in a totally unexpected, only slightly similar, direction from where it was originally going.


  3. Can’t believe you still have your first grade assignment … how cool to be able to see the fruits of your labor. Nice penmanship, even for the first grade! I love playing around with PhotoShop, but have never owned a macro lens. Your post makes me wonder why I haven’t explored with a macro. Nice post.


    1. Hi ntexas99 – I’m glad that my mom held on to this one set of drawings from when I was in school!
      I just discovered another method for turning a photo into a sketch – there are just so many techniques to learn!


  4. Every time you post one of these great shots I say I want a macro. So here goes. I want one. And the first grade assignment adds the perfect touch to this post.


  5. I love how you use your stream of consciousness to come with great topics, Margie. That macro lens is amazing. My hubby was going to buy me one for Christmas, but he got me an iPad instead, which I love, of course. Maybe next year I’ll get the macro lens. By the way, I love the picture of you on the sidebar. What a lovely woman you are!


    1. Hi CE – Hope you had a good Christmas holiday! I got the iPad last spring for my birthday, and the Macro lens as an early Christmas present. It was a good year to be me!
      Thanks for the compliment on my photo. You can tell, by the color of my hair, that I didn’t ‘photoshop’ it!


    1. Hi Writing – I’m actually at a loss for recommendations. I’m using my husband’s Canon EOS 20D which he purchased in 2004. He bought a Canon because he already had a Canon film camera – the lenses can be used on both cameras. I’m thinking of buying my own camera, and will likely buy a Canon too, but I haven’t got a clue what to get. I will keep using my husbands camera until I figure out what features of a new camera I would get the most use out of. I’m really just a novice, but the one thing I do know is how much I don’t know!


  6. I like the bee photo and the transformed bee. I am not a big fan of just running some script over a foto (unless I need a funny or ironic illustration), but the combination of photo and drawing is a clever idea and the result is a beautiful surprise.

    I’ve been playing with one of my photos yesterday as well. It’s cold and wet here… The results will be posted on Sunday.


    1. Hi Sanetes – I’m fascinated with HDR right now, and have been playing around with using a tripod and taking a bracketed series. I can see certain circumstances where the results would be quite fascinating!

      I’m very please with the result of the bee – it was quite a surprise when it appeared!


  7. Just rescued and got a pic of this bee in the desert of SE Washington State! Looked online for “bumble bee with rusty stripe” and there it was! Very cute! He/she had flown into the receiving area and settled in a box someone had just emptied. Not much blooming around here right now though… I almost felt bad letting it loose given how hot it’s been. Hopefully it’ll find some flowers near the river.


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