Category: Fabrication




beautiful bees and the world of beekeeping

Just a little playing around during bee prep time. Photo by Blake Suarez.

March was pretty insanely amazing. Sometimes I’m so overwhelmed, and so stressed, that I forget to stop and smell the roses. Let me tell you, that if you let a thousand wild insects with stingers crawl and fly all over you, and you completely remit all your powers you think you might have as a human, you get back to earth pretty quickly. But more on that later.

This past month, I did the following (in no particular order):

-Made an offer on a home/studio and got a mortgage (check your mailbox for a postcard in a few weeks)

-Illustrated a map for a book that will be published this year

-Attended a delicious pop-up dinner at Fast and French via the Lee Brothers

-Got a haircut and a massage in one day, and another day, a mani and pedi with Olivia (treat yo self)

-Attended the first of many book club meetings with my new book club (read “The History of Love” and now reading “The Invisible Bridge”)

-Finished a pet portrait and they LOVED it (yessss)

-Helped Erik through the healing process after his ACL/Meniscus surgery

-Created a taxidermy mount of my old pet rat (who died of natural causes) named Fishhooks, and was documented the entire time by the coolest dudes (and dudette) around: Lunch and Recess (thanks, guys!)

Fishhooks is pinned like that to dry properly!

-Created a new exhibit about veterinary care at the South Carolina Aquarium (opening in June)

-Designed a “save the date” card for my best friend Samantha Jill.

September 1 wedding!

-Was featured in GARDEN & GUN magazine, written by Monte Burke and shot by the talented, sweet and beautiful Olivia Rae James.

Photos by Olivia Rae James

-Prepped for, bought, installed, and will now keep a three pound package of honeybees (with one marked queen, whom I am affectionately referring to as “Queen Latifah”).

Now, to blog about that experience:

Bees in the package

I picked up the bees for Blake and Colin and myself in two separate three pound packages. I was really nervous, because they were making this incredible sound as they all vibrated in the back of my car. It was a little scary to drive back from Mount Pleasant with so many live insects in your car. I had the windows down.

Bees dumped in the hive

When we got to Colin’s, we were helped out by his friends, James and Shauna. They were a huge comfort, as they had done this plenty of times. The weird thing that happened was we had somehow attracted a bunch of random bees during the day and they were hanging on to the outside of our packages. There were no holes in the boxes. They were some type of wild or un-homed colony!

We suited up and Colin took the first step. We sprayed the bees with sugar water.  Then we got the feeder can out, got the queen out, and placed her. We had to remove the cork so that the candy keeping her in the cage was exposed. The bees will accept her once the candy has dissolved/been eaten. It takes about a week to ten days.

After dumping the remaining bees in the hive, Blake and I got the top bars in place and closed it up slowly and gently, brushing each bee away if it was about to get squished. I think we only accidentally killed one or two.

Then it was my turn!

Bees exiting and entering the hive

Doing the same steps that Colin did before, everything went really smoothly. I seriously had the time of my life. Other than the “no-seeums” that were biting the crap out of us, the bees were extremely docile and nobody got stung. Dumping the bees in the hive was so exhilarating! They were crawling on my hands and arms, and resting on our hats and backs, and they were so great. I seriously fell in love with each one of the bees.

The package is temporarily placed in front to coax the rest inside the hive.

 It’s incredible how the whole colony knows where the queen is, they know how to get her out of the cage, and they know that this random box they got dropped into is going to be their new home. I am amazed by their instincts; their sense of purpose even though each bee is just one bee. Everyone has a job and everyone gets right to it.

A mass amount of them in one place is a bit overwhelming, but having one land on your hand, or gently scooting some out of the way and watching how they interact with you and each other is incredible.

It gave me a renewed sense of respect for insects that I feel like I haven’t felt in a long time.

These critters are magical and I can’t wait to learn more about them, and take care of them the best ways I know how.





Rebekah Jacob Gallery, The Ordinary, Divine Timing.

Busy, productive, fun, full, family, frequently-amazed-at-life month. Zorn visited and met Bruce for the first time. We also indulged in some oyster shooters and candy apples.

We even tried out Charleston’s newest restaurant, Xiao Bao Biscuit, which was delicious. There was double dutch. I highly recommend the Borneo Sunrise cocktail.

Last week, I got asked to create the holiday windows at Rebekah Jacob Gallery.

Thrilled, I sent myself into a frenzy of fast and fantasy. They are up and waiting to be seen at the big Sociale Mocktails event there on Friday evening.

Mr. Fox is going to hang out there for a few months, as are the beautiful Morphos I pinned this past spring.

In other news, I am going to be creating some visual elements for The Ordinary, which I couldn’t be happier about. 

Not only is this restaurant going to be extremely swank and tasty, it’s going to be seen by a lot of humans. When you go for oysters or triggerfish this winter, be on the look out for the four reproduction saltwater fish and a case full of preserved marine life and plants that I’ve created! Progress photos to come later…. until then, here are some sketches of some ideas for the project.








I may be a LITTLE excited about friday…. here is a sketch of my outfit and an invitation.

Please join the HALSEY!




c of c creatures from the past

 My first job in Charleston was for Technical Theater Solutions. I built this cave with the help of my master-of-an-organizer-builder-supervisor, carved it myself, then coated and painted it with the help of a very talented (and also new to Charleston) assistant. Then the three of us put on the final touches and it is now completed! The cave bears at the “Creatures from the Past” museum at the College of Charleston now have a nice looking limestone habitat.

 Bears in their new home.



 Kelly admires the big bear!


 View from the hallway before you enter the museum – it is the first thing you see upon entering.


 Final shot of the new habitat from up on a ladder.

 Side views



 Close up




time flies like an arrow, fruit flies like a banana

 Some butterflies I’ve been pinning in my free time…


 A shot from the “Daily News” on “The World’s Largest Dinosaurs” at AMNH. Can’t legally show you anything else … just come see the show! Opens April 15th, I’ve got lots of vouchers.



Artwork for “Songs for Rosemary” by Tom and Cindy Luxem




Older Posts


Recent bits and bobs floating around in the creative process


Follow @beccabarnet on Instagram for process shots and #boyfriendbruce