Lady and the Bug
By Jessica Oropesa, Beetle(s) and Ladybug(s)

Started on: 04/19/10 17:21:08
Medium: Visual

I had an idea for a collaborative project using ladybugs. It is somewhat similar to the example our professor gave us at the beginning of the course in which a student traced the tracks of ants. My idea is to create drawings using ladybugs, and for the bugs, the drawings are a performative piece.

My idea started off as thinking about what non-human species I wanted to collaborate with. I strayed away from domestic pets, such as dogs or cats, because I do not have much access to them (plus I am highly allergic to cats). After thinking about the difficulties of working with wild animals, like squirrels or raccoons, I thought I would work on a smaller scale. The general area of bugs caught my attention. There is a huge variety of bugs and insects to choose from, and I like that they are small creatures. I also find bugs to be quite interesting. Also, when I was a kid I used to catch bees for my father, so I have a little bit of experience with bugs. I narrowed my ideas down to ladybugs. I don't see ladybugs too often, so whenever I do it is like a pleasant surprise to see one. Some people even believe that these creatures have some good luck!

When our class got together and talked about our ideas, I mentioned that I wanted to work with ladybugs, and one of my classmates told me I could purchase them at a local garden store. Now that I know where I can find ladybugs to collaborate with, I am steps closer to my art project idea. I plan to do some research on ladybugs before I start collaborating with them. I want to find out things they like to eat and drink, smells they are attracted to or repulsed by, etc. I already know they eat aphids, but I don't have a garden of my own to get aphids from. I want to see how they react to drawings made from water, sugar water, lemon juice, lime juice, and other types of medium. I plan to draw lines and simple shapes to see how the ladybugs react to the different smells and textures. If I find one that they are particularly happy with, I will try more complex drawings with the substance. I plan to keep a record of my findings, including pictures, reflections, and possibly video.
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