Kodua Galieti - Telling the Bees and A Tribute

Telling the Bees
of the passing of
Kodua Galieti

Kodua Galieti working in Hawaii.

Kodua Galieti working in Hawaii.

Early this Thanksgiving morning, beloved Kodua Galieti, passed away on her ranch in Elkton, Oregon. She was surrounded by her loving husband, Jeff, her mother, and all her sisters.

Kodua Galieti, an international photo-journalist and a long-time member of the Los Angeles County Beekeepers Association and the California State Beekeepers Association, gave generously and graciously of her talents in support of honey bees. Kodua Galienti’s exquisite honey bee photography adorns the walls of the L.A. County Fair Bee Booth and is featured throughout our LACBA website.

Her Bee-Inspired calendars and honey bee photography could be found in bookstores, libraries, and at bee conventions and trade shows across the country. She had an enormous talent for capturing the life and life stages of bees. Kodua Galieti could light up a room with her spirit and fill your heart with joy.

For more than a decade Kodua masterfully captured the complexities and wonders of the human experience as a photojournalist. Kodua was drawn to themes of personal story, culture, and traditions, family, faith, animals, and bees.

She has not only raised chimps but her passion for bees had led her to become a beekeeper and Kodua devoted her talent and resources toward the preservation of these incredibly important pollinators.

Each September, Kodua's photography adorns the walls of the LA County Fair Bee Booth, bringing the beauty and complexities of honey bees to thousands of fair goers.

kodua galieti’s exquisite honey bee photography on the walls of the La county fair bee booth.

kodua galieti’s exquisite honey bee photography on the walls of the La county fair bee booth.

Kodua was featured on the cover of American Bee Journal and WASP magazine, and was the selected photographer for Bee Culture’s “An Almond Odyssey.”

In an article for Calmful Living, Kodua Galieti shared her passion for honey bees:

(PHOTO: KODUA GALIETI)

(PHOTO: KODUA GALIETI)

“As I would check in on the bees—go in there, look at the frames—I was just amazed at what inside the hive looked like. So it was natural for me to bring my camera. I started doing a lot of macro photography, and it opened up into a whole new world. I think there’s such a beauty and whimsical elegance to the bees when you see them up close like that. I didn’t know they had fur until I photographed them. I didn’t know they had hair on their eyeballs until I started looking that close, and boy, it’s a different world! I fell in love with it.”

honey bee larvae in various stages of development. (photo: kodua galieti)

honey bee larvae in various stages of development. (photo: kodua galieti)

“Most beekeepers don’t look at bees through a macro lens. They’re just doing their jobs, tending the bees. So to be able to bring this little creature into such magnification for them has been amazing.

commercial BEEKEEPERS CHECKING ON WHAT’S GOING ON INSIDE THEIR HIVES. (PHOTO: KODUA GALIETI)

commercial BEEKEEPERS CHECKING ON WHAT’S GOING ON INSIDE THEIR HIVES. (PHOTO: KODUA GALIETI)

“I’ve watched diehard beekeepers stand in front of these images in awe, and realized they are seeing sometimes for the first time what it really looks like that close with that magnification.”

THE FACE OF A HONEY BEE AS IT COMES TO LIFE. (PHOTO: KODUA GALIETI)

THE FACE OF A HONEY BEE AS IT COMES TO LIFE. (PHOTO: KODUA GALIETI)

“I’ve gone to bee conferences all over the United States and Hawaii. I have a beautiful exhibit I’ve set up that tells the story from the hive to harvest of the bees.”

“I’m trying to make it so that bees are more approachable, even to children. Instead of people wanting to freak out and swat it away, I can go, ‘Wait! Look at it! Learn about it! It’s not so scary. It’s a beautiful little insect there.’”

learning about bees and what goes on inside a hive. (photo: kodua Galieti)

learning about bees and what goes on inside a hive. (photo: kodua Galieti)

I don’t have any fear of them, which is what happens when you know how to read them. One thing I love about bees is you can’t train them. You have to come into their world and respect their world and the way they do things. So when you go into the apiary, you do it their way; you respect their way of doing things. It’s their society that you’re coming into, and you respect that. By doing so, then they let you into this world.”

KODUA AND HER FELLOW BEEKEEPERS IN THE ALMOND ORCHARDS. pHOTO: KODUA GALIETI

KODUA AND HER FELLOW BEEKEEPERS IN THE ALMOND ORCHARDS. pHOTO: KODUA GALIETI

(Thank you very much to Kodua Galieti’s sister, Renee Bennett, for permission to share the following tribute, “My Sister’s Hands.”)


November Gratitude

”My Sister’s Hands”

By Renee Bennett

My Sister’s Hands (the hands of Kodua Galieti). Image: by Renee Bennett

My Sister’s Hands (the hands of Kodua Galieti). Image: by Renee Bennett

I write this in celebration of my sister, Kodua Michelle Bennett Galieti who passed away early this morning here at her farm in Elkton, Oregon.

I write this only in celebration and tribute, not as a plea for sympathy.

Last week, sitting next to her while she napped, I just stared at her hands. And then I took a photograph.

We come from a long line of makers, craftspeople, and artists. Hands hold stories and my sister’s had many chapters reflecting a life that seemed most days more fantasy than non-fiction.

As a teen and into her early twenties she would use them to guide her horse into an almost parallel lean to the ground rounding barrels at top speed in many a rodeo. She used them to hold shovels to muck out stables at a local thoroughbred race horse farm as her after school job. My sisters and I never shied away from shovels, rakes, hoes, or posthole diggers.

Her hands waved in parades and rodeo processions the year she was crowned Miss Rodeo Louisiana.

She and her husband have four horses here at the farm. The newest, a wild mustang (recently, mostly tamed) a lifelong dream of hers to own one, fulfilled, a gift from her husband a few months ago. She and her husband Jeff, rode their horses up many mountains in the most beautiful of places, sleeping under the stars.

In her late twenties she became a massage therapist in Los Angeles and created her own signature line of oils and lotions because she didn’t like what was in the marketplace. While I was pregnant with one of my sons, I complained that I wished I could get a massage, so she invented and patented a pregnancy massage table. She became certified in labor and delivery and an instructor certifying massage therapists in pregnancy massage. Her therapist hands also helped Alzheimer's patients, the elderly suffering from phlebitis, and those in chronic pain from accidents. She went to Ghana, Africa and Papua, New Guinea as part of medical mission trips. She massaged the necks, shoulders and feet of people who ached from walking miles for water with buckets and urns on their heads. Her hands healed people.

She completely and utterly delighted any person lucky enough to know her during her years as a foster parent to dozens (yes dozens) of baby chimpanzees and orangutans because we got to hold them and play with them. She placed large eyebolts to hold a giant rope across the length of her Echo Park bedroom so any primate in her care could climb. Her niece and nephews loved being able to hang out with baby primates. Such fun. The last chimp she cared for was also her namesake, Baby Kodua. Many of them were retired and they now live in Florida at the Center for Great Apes. I have such vivid memories of my sister in full grin with a baby chimpanzee in her arms.

Both of her thumbs were green.

She didn’t just garden. She GARDENED. To match her personality, her garden vegetables were gigantic. She would send us photos of her wheelbarrow filled to the brim with her harvest of the day. Those hands of hers were happiest digging in the dirt. She would flip through the pages of Baker Creek Seed Catalogue buying up every packet of Heirloom seeds that caught her fancy. So many seeds. She planted them with the childlike anticipation of Christmas. And because she seemed to have the same tomato vines producing year round, she canned her own salsas and spaghetti sauces.

She perfected the most delicious of “fall off the bone” smoked ribs. She made her special rub and proceeded to guard them on “her” grill for hours. She made many delicious meals. Always heavy handed on the cayenne pepper. She loved spicy. When visiting family in Louisiana and out at a restaurant eating boiled crawfish she always asked the waiter to bring her more cayenne. Her palate would make a Cajun cry.

Several years ago she decided she wanted to be a bee keeper. She spent her life making statements of wanting to try something new and then she would just do it. I admired that about her. No second guessing, no overthinking, she would do things she wanted to do, go places she wanted to go. So, she joined the Los Angeles County Beekeepers Association and then started one hive after another of bees. She got an extractor, a real stainless large extractor and bottled gallons of honey. And, she then gave it away to every person in her day to day life. Hundreds of bottles of delicious raw honey, gifting it and gifting it. She trained me to help her when I visited. Once she convinced me to help her move a feral hive high in a treetop into a bee box to be relocated. Though she convinced me it would be easy, it was not. Prior to us relocating it she tried to convince her husband that he could move it. His stings ended with him at the Emergency Room. But through some insane branch breaking millions of bees flying around and several hours later, we did it. It wasn’t pretty but we did it. Her husband Jeff’s, bee stings were the battle wounds of the day.

All along the way she was a photographer. At first it was just documenting her time on international mission trips. Cuba. Mexico. Norway. Africa. New Guinea. Switzerland. Then she documented her life with the chimps. She always photographed her loved ones and some of our favorite photographs are of my sons, my nephew and my niece. Those photos are the ones in which she captured their truest selves. She photographed her husband and their trips up the mountain on their draft horses. He took her once as a surprise to a remote area to witness a herd of wild mustangs. One of the best shots she took that trip is framed and hangs above their bed. She documented and then she would make photo albums for us to mark the occasions. Nice albums, forever albums.

And then, a few years ago she went macro. Her bees became her most favorite subject. She delighted in capturing brilliant orange pollen sacs and even mites on her bees’ butts. She documented the California Almond Odyssey in which millions of bees are shipped in to orchards for pollination it was shared in Bee Culture magazine. She was hired by Israel’s Ministry of Agriculture to photograph their bees for research purposes. She produced for several years a bee calendar sold at bookstores and online. Her bee photographs can still be seen at the L.A. County Fair each year.

And then, almost five years ago her hands started closing in on themselves and after many tests and appointments their closure came to be the early symptom of ovarian cancer. Her hands wouldn’t be able take photos for almost a year. She went through chemo, she had physical therapy to work them. Her hands were the signal and gave us more years than we might have had otherwise. I am grateful for them, for their clues to a diagnosis. I am grateful they were attached our adventure seeking, hardworking, generous hearted, gifted, beautiful sister with a laugh that filled a room, with an attitude and fortitude that kept her with us longer than any other person with the same issues. A woman who was still smitten with her husband. Who showed her love for us with adventures and her license plate frame of “the fun has arrived”.

I am grateful for the example of living she has left for us as we mourn and celebrate her all in the same breath.

Live. Do. Try. Love.

LACBA Meeting: January 5, 2015

The Los Angeles County Beekeepers Association will hold our first meeting of the New Year.  Join Us!

Meeting: Monday, January 5, 2015 

Time: Doors Open: 6:45pm/Starts: 7:00pm 

Location:  Mount Olive Lutheran Church
                 3561 Foothill Boulevard
                 La Crescenta, CA 91214
                       (In Shilling Hall)
See our Meetings page for details. 

 

Kodua Galieti, international photo-journalist, beekeeper, and LACBA member, is offering her beautiful 2015 BEE-INSPIRED 'The Busy Business of Bees' calendars at a 'LACBA members only' rate of $10 each.  At this price you can pick up a couple and share them with friends and fellow beekeepers.  The calendars will be available at the meeting. They can be viewed ahead of time at Kodua's website: 
http://www.koduaphotography.com/2015-Bee-Inspired-Calendar.html

Kodua Galieti

Following is an open letter from Renee Bennett (Kodua Galieti's big sister). December 5, 2014

Hello,

By now you may or may not be aware that Kodua has been diagnosed with stage III ovarian cancer.  I am hoping we might enlist your help in keeping her spirits up. She begins chemo treatments the end of next week.

It would mean a lot to our family and to Kodua if you could ask her fellow beekeepers and bee friends to send her words and cards and notes of encouragement.  If you need Kodua’s address, please message
her on her Facebook page at:  https://www.facebook.com/kodua.galieti.

It is our wish that Kodua feels the support and care of as many folks as possible to further strengthen her resolve in her battle.

We thank you tremendously for any assistance you might be able to provide.
Truly,
Renee Bennett
Kodua's big sister

Kodua Galieti is an international photojournalist and a beekeeper.  She uses macro-photography while shooting bees to show the amazing intricacies of bees. Her beautiful honey bee photography is featured throughout this LACBA website. Kodua's goal is to inspire people about the importance of the honey bee to our world. Hopefully, in the process, they will become more aware of bees and join in the quest for their survival. Kodua's photography adorns the walls of the LA County Fair Bee Booth, was featured on the cover of American Bee Journal and WASP magazine, and can be enjoyed at major bee conventions around the country. She’s a member of the California State Beekeepers Association, the Los Angeles County Beekeepers Association, and the Louisiana State Beekeepers Association.  You can view her beautiful bee photography and her 2015 BEE-INSPIRED calendar at: http://www.koduaphotography.com/

Opening Weekend at the LA County Fair - Great fun at the Bee Booth!

L.A. County Fair
at Pomona Fairgrounds
1101 W. McKinley Ave., Pomona, CA
 
Aug 29-Sept 28, Wed-Sun
(Note: The fair will be closed on Wed. 9/3.) 

Www.volunteerspot.com 
 


Visit the Bee Booth!
We're still across from the Big Red Barn
 
but we've moved to a bigger building with lots more room.

Gather round our fabulous HONEY BEE OBSERVATION HIVE and learn about bees. LACBA members will be on hand sharing their knowledge and passion for bees and beekeeping. Come, let us spark your interest in honey bees, their amazing lifestyle and social structure, how they help feed the world, and how they have survived for millions of years.  Come FIND THE QUEEN! 

 

On view is the fabulous bee photography by Kodua Galieti. We have posters and pollination information, bee-friendly plants, and suggestions for What You Can Do to help the bees.

Delicious local 100% pure raw honey from Los Angeles County available for purchase.
And Honey Stix galore!

This year we have a special treat. The lovely Queen Susannah, the American Honey Bee Queen, is buzzing across the country sharing interesting stories and facts about honey bees. She'll be on hand in our 'Bee Booth' to meet and talk with you from Sept. 10-14. Come MEET THE QUEEN! 

http://www.lacountyfair.com/  /events/

LACBA Holiday Dinner Fun!!!

Thank you to everyone who helped with our wonderful LACBA Annual Holiday Dinner last evening at the Pickwick Gardens. Great fun was had by all.

Our delicious dinner was provided by Outback Catering (LACBA Member, Doug Noland). Potluck appetizers and desserts were brought by LACBA members.

RAFFLE!!! prizes were awesome and honey bee related.  

LABCA President, Jim Lindsey, performed the duties of Master of Ceremonies.  

LACBA Secretary, Stacey McKenna, was our gracious host and organizer of the event.

LACBA Vice President, Keith Roberts, presented the Golden Hive Tool award (our President's choice of someone who has shown great dedication to the club and thereby improved people's experience of beekeeping) to Stacy McKenna. Stacy has been the LACBA secretary for five years, volunteers at the LA County Fair Bee Booth, attends the CSBA Annual Conventions, takes copious notes of everything, shares the information with everyone, and is always willing to help beekeepers and the Los Angeles County Beekeepers Association. Congratulations, Stacy, on receiving this award. And, thank you!

A special thank you to Kodua Galieti, photojournalist, beekeeper, LACBA member for her inspiring presentation of her travels through the beekeeping world of Israel, the Land of Milk and Honey. 

"While traveling in Israel, I had the privilege to photograph bees with Haim Efrat and Yosi Slavetski of the Ministry of Agriculture. What I learned is that beekeepers face the same joys and challenges all over the world. I found that we beekeepers have a special camaraderie because we share the same passion for bees and their welfare and understand how vital they are to our existance." -Kodua Galieti
http://www.koduaphotography.com/

Bee Inspired 2014 Bee Calendar by Kodua Galieti - Now on Sale!!!

 Just in time for the Holidays...the gorgeous Bee Inspired 2014 Bee Calendar from Kodua Galieti.


This beautiful calendar just makes you fall in love with bees all over again. Exquisite photographs, heartwarming, informative captions. Available individually or in bulk. Take a look at Kodua Photography

(Note: The calendars will be available at our next LACBA meeting. Yeah!!!)

Kodua Galieti: The Beauty of the Bees (Presentation at Holiday Dinner)

Please note that for last month's LACBA meeting we had planned on having a presentation of photo-journalist Kodua Galieti's 'Beekeeping in Israel.' However, due to lots of timely questions from the floor and other issues, we ran short of time. Then we thought we'd have the presentation in May, as noted in our April LACBA Newsletter.

On further consideration, we've realized that in a typical meeting we would probably not have enough time to do Kodua's extraordinary work justice. So, Kodua has agreed to be our Special Guest Presenter at our Annual Holiday dinner in December. Now we can look forward to a very special relaxed evening of Kodua's 'Beekeeping in Israel.'

Thank you, Kodua  

http://www.koduaphotography.com/

http://organicconnectmag.com/wp/kodua-galieti-the-beauty-of-the-bees/#.UYEtTrWko3L

Kodua Galieti: The Beauty of the Bees (Presentation at LACBA Meeting)

This evening, the Los Angeles County Beekeepers Association is pleased and honored to feature Kodua Galieti, Photo Journalist, Beekeeper, LACBA member and her latest adventures "Beekeeping in Israel" at our next LACBA meeting (Monday, April 1, 2013, Doors Open: 7pm / Meeting Starts: 7:30pm). 

Read the latest article on Kodua Galieti in Organic Connections Magazine.

The Beauty of the Bees

At a certain point in her life, photojournalist Kodua Galieti became enchanted with honeybees and added two hives to her organic garden. But as she began working with the bees, her photographer’s eye took her much closer: with macro photography, she began documenting—up close and personal—the wonder of life that creates so much life elsewhere.

“As I would check in on the bees—go in there, look at the frames—I was just amazed at what inside the hive looked like,” Galieti tells Organic Connections. “So it was natural for me to bring my camera. I started doing a lot of macro photography, and it opened up into a whole new world. I think there’s such a beauty and whimsical elegance to the bees when you see them up close like that. I didn’t know they had fur until I photographed them. I didn’t know they had hair on their eyeballs until I started looking that close, and boy, it’s a different world! I fell in love with it.”

Amazing the Beekeepers

Galieti began showing off her photographs at conferences and gatherings of beekeepers and enthusiasts—and found that many of them had no idea what they were working with every day. “Most beekeepers don’t look at bees through a macro lens,” Galieti says. “They’re just doing their jobs, tending the bees. So to be able to bring this little creature into such magnification for them has been amazing.

“I’ve gone to bee conferences all over the United States and Hawaii. I have a beautiful exhibit I’ve set up that tells the story from the hive to harvest of the bees. I’ve watched diehard beekeepers stand in front of these images in awe, and realized they are seeing sometimes for the first time what it really looks like that close with that magnification.”

“A Beautiful Little Insect”

But it’s not just beekeepers that are amazed—it is everyone. “I’m trying to make it so that bees are more approachable, even to children,” Galieti explains. “Instead of people wanting to freak out and swat it away, I can go, ‘Wait! Look at it! Learn about it! It’s not so scary. It’s a beautiful little insect there.’”

Galieti has even created a bee calendar, which has proven extremely popular. “I wondered how I could reach people who would not give a bee a second thought,” she says. “And I realized I could tie my photography in with a calendar and have a lot of information that would delightfully educate people. It turned out... Continue reading and enjoy more bee images... 

For more information, visit www.koduaphotography.com.

[Note: The exquisite bee photography that populates our LACBA website was provided by Kodua Galieti.]

Kodua Galieti: The Beauty of the Bees

Organic Connections    

At a certain point in her life, photojournalist Kodua Galieti became enchanted with honeybees and added two hives to her organic garden. But as she began working with the bees, her photographer’s eye took her much closer: with macro photography, she began documenting—up close and personal—the wonder of life that creates so much life elsewhere.

“As I would check in on the bees—go in there, look at the frames—I was just amazed at what inside the hive looked like,” Galieti tells Organic Connections. “So it was natural for me to bring my camera. I started doing a lot of macro photography, and it opened up into a whole new world. I think there’s such a beauty and whimsical elegance to the bees when you see them up close like that. I didn’t know they had fur until I photographed them. I didn’t know they had hair on their eyeballs until I started looking that close, and boy, it’s a different world! I fell in love with it.”

Amazing the Beekeepers

Galieti began showing off her photographs at conferences and gatherings of beekeepers and enthusiasts—and found that many of them had no idea what they were working with every day. “Most beekeepers don’t look at bees through a macro lens,” Galieti says. “They’re just doing their jobs, tending the bees. So to be able to bring this little creature into such magnification for them has been amazing.

“I’ve gone to bee conferences all over the United States and Hawaii. I have a beautiful exhibit I’ve set up that tells the story from the hive to harvest of the bees. I’ve watched diehard beekeepers stand in front of these images in awe, and realized they are seeing sometimes for the first time what it really looks like that close with that magnification.”

“A Beautiful Little Insect”

But it’s not just beekeepers that are amazed—it is everyone. “I’m trying to make it so that bees are more approachable, even to children,” Galieti explains. “Instead of people wanting to freak out and swat it away, I can go, ‘Wait! Look at it! Learn about it! It’s not so scary. It’s a beautiful little insect there.’”

Galieti has even created a bee calendar, which has proven extremely popular. “I wondered how I could reach people who would not give a bee a second thought,” she says. “And I realized I could tie my photography in with a calendar and have a lot of information that would delightfully educate people. It turned out...

Read more and enjoy more bee images... 

For more information, please visitwww.koduaphotography.com.

[Note: The exquisite bee photography that populates our website was provided by Kodua Galieti.]

2013 BEE Calendar by Kodua Galieti Features Bill's Bees

Bill's Bees featured in 2013 BEE Calendar created by award-winning photo-journalist, beekeeper, LACBA member, Kodua Galieti.

Bill's Bees is the month of July!

"Honey bees arrive in California by semi-truck beginning in October from as far away as Florida. They prepare for one of their most important pollination jobs of the year in February, which is the California almonds. The honey bees are anxious to fly and burst forth from their hives at first light of day to get their bearings and take care of "beesness." When there is a strong smell of nectar in the air, it almost seems like the honey bees explode out of the hive even before sunrise. This is especially visible when moving bees to oranges just as the bloom begins. The bees thrive in almonds and oranges. Well fed bees are happy healthy bees." - Bill Lewis & Clyde Steese, owners, Bill's Bees.

http://www.koduaphotography.com/2013_Calendar.html

LACBA Buzzings!!! Newsletter from November 2012 Meeting

Buzzings!!! Newsletter from our November 2012 Meeting is now ready for your reading enjoyment. Thank you to LACBA Secretary, Stacy McKenna, on a wonderful job. Some of the topics include: the CSBA Convention, LACBA election of officers, Holiday Party at Pickwick Gardens Dec. 5, and Kodua's 2013 BEE Calendar!!!  Enjoy!