Robber Fly (Assassin Fly)

Asilieae small

These hairy little guys are pretty fierce and aggressive predatory flies.  From the family Diptera.  I’ve enjoyed the Robber Fly in action many times.  They seem to be completely unbothered by humans and focused on the hunt.  It is not unusual to see one zoom by with another fly or even a dragon fly in his grasp.  A patient viewer can observe a Robber Fly as he scope-out and hunts down his prey.  One may even get to view as he uses his small proboscis (straw-like mouth part) to liquefy and devour his prey.       This painting was done with watercolor and Prismacolor colored pencils on illustration board   11″ x 14″

If you’re interested in more info on robber Flies : http://www.everythingabout.net/articles/biology/animals/arthropods/insects/flies/robber_fly/

Eastern Lubber Grasshopper

 

Lubber small

When driving through rural areas in Florida it is not unusual to have these huge grasshoppers flailing themselves at your car in large numbers.  I imagine for some people seeing this for the first time they might find it sort of creepy.  Romalea microptera, common name Lubber is a large grasshopper found throughout Florida and the southeastern United states.  Known for it’s size and color (about 3″).  Though the Lubber has small wings, it does not exactly fly but jumps rather clumsily (thus the name Lubber).  These grasshoppers can be very damaging to crops and ornamentals.

For more information on the Romalea microptera:   http://entnemdept.ufl.edu/creatures/orn/lubber.htm

My Set-Up for Insect Illustrations

cicada set-up (1)

This is a pinned cicada mounted on a cork that swivels on a ball and socket.  The device is called a posing stage.  This setup is so I don’t have to handle the specimen as I am notoriously breaking legs and antennae.  (See posing stage photo below)

bold jumper set-up

This is a stereoscopic microscope or dissecting microscope. (1960’s)  It is connected to the monitor which is showing a  Bold Jumper spider.

cicada set-up (10)

This image shows a better view of the posing stage from Bioquip Products.  This enables me to move the specimen all around by the handle without having to touch it.

bold jumper 3 set-up

1960’s dissecting microscope.

Did it My Way

Sinatra (post2)Sinatra (post)

Drew Frank Sinatra for Mom back in 2002.  I loved that SHE loved it!  Mom passed in ’07 and Frank has been in my garage since.  Friend and fellow Blogger, AnnMarie, inadvertently reminded me of this piece, so I pulled it out, dusted it off and am posting it for her.  Stop by and check out her awesome poetry and art at Ann Together.

Pencil and chalk on toned paper.

A Couple of Beetle Paintings

Odontolabis Femoralis

Macrodontia cervicornis

Common Name, Lanternfly

This little colorful and exotic creature is a Fulgorid bug. Other common names are, Dragon-Headed bug and Wart-Headed bug.

Fulgorid bug

Fulgorid bug

Phrictus quinquepartitus from the order Hemiptera (2-4″)
Also considered a plant hopper or leaf hopper, she is a sap-feeding herbivore and is typically arboreal. She feeds by uncurling her proboscis, which is a long curled-up straw like mouth part.  Most Fulgorid bugs share the same distinctive features of long, strangely shaped heads.

Reference taken from the book, “Insects, Spiders and Other Terrestrial Arthropods” by George C. McGavin

Liquitex Acrylic paints on watercolor paper.