Bees are one of the more popular insects in tattoo art. Whether placed by itself, or within a swarm, bee tattoos are considered a symbol of an ordered life, diligence and even a respect for social order. These are only a few reasons why bee tattoos have found their way into modern society. However, a person may use it as a more anachronistic symbol; in the past the bee was associated with the soul, war, peace and even protection.
The vast majority of bee tattoos feature an either cute or exaggerated facsimile. Many of these pieces depict a large eyed insect with a fuzzy, and vividly colored body. Although most people will use the usual yellow and black, some may opt for bright hues of pink or aqua blue. It is slightly less usual, but equally stunning to use black and red, or even purple on the body. Many of these tattoos are rather small and placed in discreet areas. However, there are many bee tattoos that show this insect large and in great detail. This style often includes props such as crowns, fruit or flowers. It is not uncommon for a person to expand upon the idea of a ‘queen’ bee, and create a bee with a feminine, curvaceous figure with a mop of ringlets below her antenna and tiara; perhaps a scepter in a black gloved hand, and large, heavily lashed eyes.
Some bee tattoos take on an otherworldly appearance. These themes may be anything from fantasy to science fiction. Some ideas for the fantasy style would be an oversized — but realistic — bee carrying a fairy upon its back. You could also morph the image of the bee into the appearance of a fire breathing dragon. For a science fiction feel, you could create a scaled, alien-like image, or a mechanical bee. The mechanical depiction could show glowing red eyes, and a metallic body with flames, or even bullets bursting from the stinger.
Opinions on bees are often mixed. Although we may fear a sting, we are aware of their vital part in our system. Their own industrious and collective nature may speak to the wearer of this design, and will often express their own hard working attitude to the world around them.