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2010 oil on canvas (50cm x 40cm)
This is virtually complete apart from needing a slight touch up and a varnish to even it all out. This painting features my new found friends the beetles.
My son got a book from school which remains open in my studio. I am in awe at the variety, mechanisms and beauty of these creatures. They also come with wonderful names which will inspire a few more paintings I think. Did you know there is a ‘violin beetle’? You can see one here with the famous ‘goliath’ beetle.
The heads are inspired by tribal masks and the head on the right features ‘monkey-heads’ which are used in African buildings as wooden rivets to pin mud walls together and to stop them spreading apart.

This painting is a stage on from ‘beetle crushers’ and my next work will be quite something (I hope!). I did a sketch which was close to being a good idea but my ingenious son came up with a great idea to make the whole thing work brilliantly. He has great vision! I cant wait to show it!!
If I stay patient, I might bring colour into the work but if the atmosphere works in monochrome as it does here, I will stick to simplicity.
This is a small painting but my next one must be larger. I need impact. Im desperate to kick ass and making bigger work will help me do this!
Thankyou all for taking time to look and sorry for not replying… my slow computer gives me such hassle. You all inspire me so thankyou!! I will reply when I can but in the mean time may I send you my warmest wishes and may you be happy and creative!
I wish Van Gogh had lived with Redbubble! I think he would have survived his lonely ordeal with its inspirational community…

as of 25/4/11 this painting has received 782 views!! Thankyou to everyone who has taken time to look and comment!!!!!


beetles, black and white, masks, oil painting, surrealism

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  • helene ruiz
    helene ruizover 4 years ago

    fantastic work! just superb!

  • As always you are a wonderful support Helene!!! Thankyou and I hope you are busy creating and showing your fabulous art!!!

    – Stephen Mclaren

  • maxy
    maxyover 4 years ago

    Wow! I love what you did here! Those beetles really come alive in this!

  • Thanks Maxy!! Sorry to reply so late.. your comment was so appreciated.. and still is!!! :-))))))

    – Stephen Mclaren

  • AnnaAsche
    AnnaAscheover 4 years ago


  • Thankyou!!!!!!!!! how is your work going Anna?? All the best and I hope you are busy!!!

    – Stephen Mclaren

  • Lynnette Shelley
    Lynnette Shelleyover 4 years ago

    FAB Stephen!

  • Thanks L!!! How are you, hows the art coming along and hows the band?? I see on FB you have a gig soon!! Wish I could be there!! PLEASE do a Scotland tour!!!!!

    – Stephen Mclaren

  • donnamalone
    donnamaloneover 4 years ago

    Incredible! loved your process too.

  • Thanks Donna!!!!! How u doin??? :-))))))

    – Stephen Mclaren

  • т я
    т яover 4 years ago

    great job,, I love working with bugs too…

  • Thanks T backward R!!!! (how do you get a backward letter?? Do you have a Russian keyboard?? )
    I love your site.. I had a look just now… I must go back and find those ‘bugs’!!
    All the best :-))))))

    – Stephen Mclaren

  • VenusOak
    VenusOakover 4 years ago


  • Thankyou!!!! How are you?? Sorry to reply so late.. but your lovely comment is really appreciated!!!!!

    – Stephen Mclaren

  • sharpie
    sharpieover 4 years ago

    Awesome work, very powerfull!
    Love the monochrome it does work !

  • Thanks Sharpie!!! Monochrome focuses the mind…. :-)))))))))

    – Stephen Mclaren

  • Ushna Sardar
    Ushna Sardarover 4 years ago

  • A VERY belated thankyou for your support Ushna!!!! I am always honoured to be featured in you stunning group! Thankyou!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    – Stephen Mclaren

  • Rhonda Strickland
    Rhonda Stricklandover 4 years ago

    This is simply fabulous!! I love the soft monotones and the intricacies of the beetles. . . it is so wonderful to get inspired by our children. . . sometimes they can open an entire new world.
    Congrats on your feature!!

  • Thankyou for such a lovely comment Rhonda!!! You deserve a speedier response so I apologise!! I loved your comment back when you visited and I love it now!!!
    Have a lovely weekend!!!!!

    – Stephen Mclaren

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