Buzzing in the B-Hive

I wanted to share some illustration work I had done in the not so distant past for Bitch Media, the non-profit best known for publishing the magazine Bitch: Feminist Response to Pop Culture. They wanted to refresh their "B-Hive" sustainer program art to help promote fundraising campaigns. Each donor level is represented by a different bee character (the highest monthly donors are represented by the Killer Bee, for instance) and I was asked to create new bee character badges in a more iconic style that could bring a contemporary, poppy feel overall and uniqueness to each level.

Killer Bee

Killer Bee

Queen Bee, Spelling Bee

Queen Bee, Spelling Bee

Busy Bee, Honey Bee, Bumble Bee

Busy Bee, Honey Bee, Bumble Bee

I had a lot of fun thinking about how manipulating the physical attributes (wings, antenna, stingers, etc.) of each bee could bring out their character. Narrow wings and straight antenna help the Killer Bee stay fierce and streamlined, uplifting forms and bold features help make the Queen Bee feel powerful and vibrant, stubby wings and an averted gaze keeps the Spelling Bee cute and shy, and so on.

I did want to pay sensitivities to all different types of individuals that make up the Bitch community, so I tried to reflect a variety of bee shapes, personal styles, and sizes in the characters I created. Below are the 6 different levels of sustainers represented.

Busy Bee, Honey Bee, Spelling Bee, Bumble Bee, Queen Bee, Killer Bee

Busy Bee, Honey Bee, Spelling Bee, Bumble Bee, Queen Bee, Killer Bee

From left to right: Busy Bee, Honey Bee, Spelling Bee, Bumble Bee, Queen Bee, Killer Bee

The versatile bees have been made into stickers, Scout Books, posters, web art, and more. I'm proud to say I'm currently a Busy Bee.