Photos courtesy of Tom Hardwidge
Artist and maker Tom Hardwidge has an incredible talent for building bugs. His sculptures of insects use a Steampunk aesthetic to bring his critters to life, and they're both gorgeous and a little bit creepy.
As the sculptures are of robot-like arthropods, Hardwidge calls them "arthrobots". He's been crafting them since late 2010 and has quite a collection already built up.
Luckily, you can purchase some of his creations. But he is careful to note that these are not toys, since they are made of cut metals that could have sharp edges. Unfortunately, it doesn't look as if Hardwidge uses recycled materials for the creations, except for some of the springs and gears that are sourced from old pocket watches donated by a local watch repair shop. Upcycling is something we would love to see more of in the creations. Perhaps he'll move on to upcycling old metals for his arthrobots as demand goes up, which we're sure will happen with these lovely sculptures.
Each sculpture is based on a natural insect, such as grasshoppers, dragonflies, butterflies, beetles, bees, spiders and so on. But they aren't exact replicas of certain species, since Hardwidge also takes inspiration from the various metal parts he uses to create them.
These sculptures are a wonderful artistic take on some of the most important critters on earth. We love that he celebrates insects in such a unique way.
Check out this cool high-speed video of Hardwidge creating one of his sculptures:
Follow Jaymi on Twitter for more stories like this
More on Artists
7 Examples of Amazing Art Created from Trash (Slideshow)
Rethinking Trash into Inspired Art (Slideshow)
Recycling Artist Creates Portraits From Old Cassettes