Found throughout the cloud forests of Southeast Asia, the walking flower mantis uses a phenomenon known as 'aggressive mimicry' to lure in pollinating insects, by mimicking the appearance of orchids that are found elsewhere in their shared habitat.

There is no one particular orchid that the flower mantis resembles. Instead their odd appearance and colouring gives off the vague suggestion of a orchid, a tactic likely used to draw in as wide a variety of pollinators as possible.

This type of mimicry inevitably creates a feedback loop known as an 'evolutionary arms race'. Whereby the mimic and mimicked are intertwined in a state of continuous competition in a bid to 'out-evolve' one another.

On the outside ecosystems like these may seem harmonious. When in actuality, just below the surface there is an undercurrent of dissonance. A fight for survival, ever-shifting the equilibriums of these worlds.
A vibrant repeating pattern depicting a rainforest world filled with praying mantises and snakes.
Illustration of a lively jungle scene of flying snakes, stripy plants and frightened insects.
Digital illustration of a praying mantis defending itself against two approaching snakes.
Digital illustration of two ornate praying mantises wearing ostentatious floral headgear.
Helter Skelter · Persimmon
Repeat pattern of a dark green jungle scene filled with insects, eyes, plants and snakes.
Illustration of a praying mantis facing off against a characterful snake in woodland colours.
Digital illustration of a sweet praying mantis with big glowing orange eyes.
Digital illustration of a preying mantis cowering in a strange and foreboding world.
Helter Skelter · Alpine
Periwinkle blue repeat pattern of 'Helter Skelter' drawn by Sam Wilde showing a lively world.
Highly detailed digital illustration of abstract rainforest foliage in pastel blues and purples.
Digital illustration of an odd praying mantis catching falling rain drops while battling a snake.
Digital illustration of a praying mantis clinging onto a giant snake within a strange rain forest.
Helter Skelter · Smog
A photograph of framed bug wallpapers created by the artist Sam Wilde resting against a white wall.
Work in progress sketches of praying mantis character design concepts for a videogame.
Helter Skelter · Concept Art
Work-in-progress sketch showing the base layer illustration for the 'Helter Skelter'  pattern.
Helter Skelter · WIP Art