Beekeeping Photography

Reader Contribution by The Surrey Beekeeper

I have long been an admirer of Beekeeping Photography and so when I heard about the project being undertaken by Geoff Fitzgerald and his Beekeeping Photography exploits I had to hear more. I got in contact with Geoff and fortunately he agreed to chart his adventures here on my blog for you. If you want to find out more about Geoff and his beekeeping photography have a look at my Guest Beekeeping Bloggers page. In the meantime, if you are interested in contacting me if you have a great project please contact me

“How does the beekeeper get all the bees into the beehive? Does he/she just say “GET IN THERE BEES!?”

This was a joke question a friend of mine in high school asked to our grade 10-science teacher. At the time, it was something my current group of friends of mine and myself used to say all the time, as it turned into a sort of inside joke that we would just yell out randomly, “GET IN THERE BEES!!”. Little did I know that this high school joke would actually lead me to be truly fascinated with the art of beekeeping, beekeeping photography, and all things to do with honeybee’s years later. 

I am very happy to be contributing monthly as a guest blogger on James Dearsley’s amazing Surrey Beekeeper website (Thanks Geoff!). There are a lot of passionate beekeepers out there, myself included, and as I progress month to month, I will slowly share with you my developing thoughts, ideas, beekeeping photography, and stories that link together my two current passions of beekeeping and photography.

In this first post, I am going to tell you a little bit about how I came to be so fascinated with honeybees, and the art of beekeeping. As I stated above, it all stemmed from the one highschool joke, that I later in college would still continue to yell out that inside joke, however I started to actually think about what I was actually saying, how do they actually get the bees in there? Which led to me doing some research on beekeepers and honeybees, and as I started seeing sample beekeeping photography of these incredible insects I thought they would make a good subject for one of my next assignments, as I was studying photography at Sheridan College in Oakville, On Canada at the time. I outsourced some information regarding local beekeepers as I thought it would be great to spend a day with a beekeeper and photograph not only the bees but also the real star of the show, the apiarist themselves.

I managed to track down a local beekeeper near my hometown of Paris Ontario; he worked just outside the area in Brantford. I scheduled a day that looked good in mid June, and I made a trip back for a day of shooting, as he was going to do some extractions that day, and maybe even find a queen for me to shoot. At the time, I knew very little of the art of beekeeping, but as I strolled through the beautiful farmlands where he kept his bees, the warm sun, and the constant buzz of the bees hard at work, all zipped up in my bee suit I was falling in love while taking these photos. It was an amazingly rewarding feeling, as I came away with over a thousand images that I would later go on to show in multiple gallery’s from downtown Toronto in the distillery district, to the Toronto Pearson International airport as well as the showcase image for a charity art auction in London Ontario “Because” that donated money to help with research on CCD.

CCD (Colony Collapse Disorder) this was a term that I learned after my first beekeeper shoot in Brantford, I knew nothing about it but was intrigued by the seriousness of the situation. A few years after the success of these images in multiple showings and sales, I wondered how I could link together the issue of CCD and my beekeeping photography into a brand new series of images without repeating the same visual images I had already shot. Living in the big city of Toronto, I wondered how many people were beekeeping, and with a little research realized that there were a lot more than I or many other people realized. However many of these people were doing it in a very interesting and unique way, and at that moment I knew I had found my next photo series involving beekeepers and their beautiful busy girls.

Thanks for reading, I’ll see you all next month as I reveal some exciting information and images from my current ongoing beekeeping photography series that I look to show in a solo gallery this May 2012 in downtown Toronto.

If you would like to find out more about Geoff and his Beekeeping Photography please go to my Guest Beekeeping Bloggers Page

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