Stag Beetles

stag-beetles Prompt: Bug Brawl

In one of the many nature documentaries narrated by David Attenborough,  there's a slightly silly scene of beetles battling on a branch. These are not those beetles exactly, but who needs realism when neon orange will do?

The beetles take the business quite seriously of course, but given that they look silly doing it and that the loser is unharmed (he is flipped off of the branch and suffers an extremely long fall, but due to his exoskeleton and low weight he's not the worse for wear) the deadly earnest attitude just makes it funnier.

This is the beginning of the fight, from the point of view of one of the combatants. I wanted to draw from a bug's eye view to show that they consider this serious business. The godlike top down view trivializes the business too much.

Regarding the nuts and bolts: From the start I wanted this drawing to be in a photographic narrow range of focus style, reflecting the bug's priorities in that moment. In retrospect I wish I had used some sort of motion blur, because while the narrow focus does the job of making the picture emotionally immediate it also really immobilizes the whole scene.

The texture on the bugs is wrong, but I'm not sure what would be better. The problem is exacerbated because the texture on the branch and the blobby leaves in the far background are both pretty excellent.  I'll need to find something shinier and less blobby next time.