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Insect Orchid Mantis Specimen Photo“Ophelia” the orchid mantis

Scientific name: Hymenopus coronatus (nymph)
Geographic location: Malaysia, Asia
Artist: Jessa Huebing-Reitinger
Medium: Pastel on Wallis grit paper 24” x 18” 2006
For Sale: $4,500 framed

There are over 4000 known species of praying mantis known world wide and they are masters in camouflage. This painting depicts an orchid mantis in its nymph stage right before it molts into an adult. Not only will she nearly double in size and gain wings that extend her full body length, but she will change dramatically in color and design as well. Most people find it difficult to see her as she sits perfectly still at the center of an orchid flower. With combined textures, colors, and shapes, to look so much like flower petals, prey visiting the orchid for pollination and a drink of nectar won’t even see her. Any insect flying within an inch of the orchid will most likely be her next meal.

This painting was inspired by a photograph that Jessa took at the Kansas State Insect Zoo in 2004. However, the photo was poor quality as it was the first time she had used a digital camera with a macro lens and thus the painting was challenging in many ways. Ophelia is available for purchase as she was painted on Jessa’s free time instead of live within a public venue. If you wish to be notified of future paintings available for purchase please sign up for our quarterly emailed newsletter.

Ophelia" the orchid mantis

Pastel on Wallis
For Sale: $4,500 framed

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