Big Beetle Bug

Thursday, July 05, 2007

California Prionus beetle on black scratchboard by Ann Ranlett

My latest ACEO is a scratchboard drawing of a longhorn beetle, a California Prionus or Prionus Root Borer (Prionus californicus). These wood boring beetles visit our place every summer. They're large, dark brown and they make a creepy noise when disturbed. It sounds like something right out of a horror movie, but it's only their hind legs rubbing against the sides of their outer wings. The scientific term for that is "stridulation". FYI, crickets stridulate to make their characteristic chirping sound, although they're rubbing their hind legs together.

I did this drawing as part of the eBay Scratchboard Artists' Group's monthly challenge. Each month we draw something relating to a theme - this month's theme is "bugs". The only "rule" is that the drawing has to be done on scratchboard. It can be left black & white or colored with ink, color pencil or watercolor.

I chose a small piece (ACEO size: 3.5"x2.5") of black scratchboard for this beetle drawing and then selected one my many beetle photos for reference. I enjoyed the challenge of scratching away most of the black to leave just the beetle and its shadow. I didn't realize until I was scanning the image that it's actual size, since the beetles can get up to 2 1/4" long. And if you think the beetle's creepy, do a Google search for its grub!

View the auction listing for the beetle.

The auction runs for 7 days, ending at 6:15 PST on the 12th.

For lots more scratchboard art (mine and a number of other artists) and a demo of another one of my ACEO scratchboard drawings, check out this new site: ScratchboardArt.com

5 comments:

PaintDog August 11, 2007 at 6:32 PM  

The beetle art didn't sell on eBay, but it did just sell! An artist friend of mine bought it at a local "Art Walk" event the other evening. Thanks Cindy!!!

-Ann

Brandy June 17, 2011 at 10:11 AM  

Thanks for the informative posting and accurate drawing. We found of these guys on our window sill this morning (In VA.) and we're able to identify it from your drawing :)

PaintDog June 17, 2011 at 12:40 PM  

Glad I could help with your beetle ID, Brandy! I think that since you're in VA, though, you probably have a tile-horned prionus. They look very similar. Mine is a CA species. Haven't seen any yet this year, but they should be arriving soon now that summer is here.

http://www.whatsthatbug.com/2011/06/06/tile-horned-prionus-6

JEFF BOWMAN July 20, 2013 at 8:18 AM  

Thank you for posting a pic of this large bug, I found one on 7-17-13 in Urbana, Ohio crawling up the side of my home on the vinyl siding, we just had mulch delivered a few weeks ago and Iam sure it came from there.

JEFF BOWMAN July 20, 2013 at 8:21 AM  

Thank you for posting a pic of this large bug, I found one on 7-17-13 in Urbana, Ohio crawling up the side of my home on the vinyl siding, we just had mulch delivered a few weeks ago and Iam sure it came from there.

- - - All art and images ©Ann Ranlett, unless otherwise credited. All rights reserved. - - -

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