The Nepalese honey gatherer by Colombe  Cambourne

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The Rai are the honey gatherers of the Himalayas in Nepal. The men harvest honey from the combs of the giant rock bees (the largest in the world) hanging to the steep cliffs of the world’s highest mountains.
The harvest ritual begins with a prayer and offering of flowers, fruits and rice, then a fire is lit at the base of the cliff to smoke the bees from their honeycombs.
From the top of the cliff, a honey hunter descends harnessed to a ladder by ropes and must fight the bees as he cuts out chunks of honey comb that are caught by the men below.

Pastels (Unison) and Pastel pencils (Derwent & Stabilo) on Colourfix paper.


  • Corinne Pouzet
    Corinne Pouzetover 3 years ago

    Ahhh oui alors, voilà un angle fort difficile à appréhender..
    Tu as bien su retracer les traits physiques de cette peuplade particulièrement la bouche et les yeux. Il a du en ramasser du miel car il est bien ridé le pauvre !
    Merci pour le descriptif toujours extrêmement intéressant pour comprendre ce que tu as dépeint.
    J’admire les oreilles chez toi…..

  • Je pense que je me suis un peu plantée avec le lobe…… it seems awfully big! Ha, ha, ha. Ah well.
    I hate how the image comes out so smooth, the real thing is full of quick strokes of the pastel but you can’t see them! Damn it….
    Merci big sis! Grosses bises

    – Colombe Cambourne

  • Andrea Félix
    Andrea Félixover 3 years ago

    Wonderful! Love the painting and the subject!

  • Thank you Andrea, it’s nice of you to say so

    – Colombe Cambourne

  • MIchelle Thompson
    MIchelle Thompsonover 3 years ago

    Stunning work – love it. Michelle

  • Thank you very much

    – Colombe Cambourne

  • Lynda Robinson
    Lynda Robinsonover 3 years ago

    More stunning work from you Colombe! You just get better and better. Amazing ‘linework’ in that face.

  • Thank you for your beautiful comment Lynda. I was watching a documentary about these people and this man came on. He’s an elder and was explaining how he used to collect the honey (the lines on his face really tell a story). I froze the recording, then i took a photo of him and that’s what inspired me!

    – Colombe Cambourne

  • FranEvans
    FranEvansover 3 years ago

    Another brilliant painting, Colombe! I think I would give up eating honey if I had to go through that to get it!

  • Me too! It’s way too scary the see these people do this. I have much admiration for them though. Thank you beaucoup Fran!

    – Colombe Cambourne

  • Kate Eller
    Kate Ellerover 3 years ago

    Wonderful pastel with outstanding character. Beautiful work Colombe.

  • Kate I can see that faces do interest you too, you did some wonderful ones. Thank you for leaving your lovely comment.

    – Colombe Cambourne

  • Mary Sedici
    Mary Sediciover 3 years ago

    Featured Work MARCH 4th, 2011


    ►"Please enter/vote in the ongoing Challenges":

  • Oh thank you so very much Mary!

    – Colombe Cambourne

  • Lynda Robinson
    Lynda Robinsonover 3 years ago

    What a brilliant method of working. You captured a great angle.

  • Here you are again Lynda! How funny, this is a live chat…….

    – Colombe Cambourne

  • Lynda Robinson
    Lynda Robinsonover 3 years ago

    LOL! I just finished cleaning the blasted car, and I have been eaten alive by March flies, so I thought I would sit down for a breather for a few minutes! Back to the grindstone – now to vacuum the inside!

  • Corinne Pouzet
    Corinne Pouzetover 3 years ago

    Fé-li-ci-ta-tions !!!! Yeeeeehahhh

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