The Web – 156/365

Sorry, but you knew it was coming, I did mention it a while back that I’d be doing a spider post at some point……

Like them or not, spiders are pretty interesting creatures, you have to admit. They are super evolved mini predators, capable of building and setting traps, and lying in wait for them to be sprung!

They hide out of sight, and touch a single thread of their webs with a leg, and monitor it for the tiniest of vibrations that indicate their trap has caught something.

It’s pretty clever when you think about it, then it gets pretty gruesome as they mummify their victims in web, liquify their insides, and finally they suck out the juicy bits.

They’re also cool to photograph, because they stay perfectly still and have loads of interesting detail going on.

If this is all making you a little uneasy, from here on in it gets nicer, I think!?

I’ve edited the following images with some more “settling” background tones and colours.

The other cool thing about photographing spiders is that when they’re poised on fine bits of web, it looks like they’re just hanging suspended in mid air.

This one, below, was enjoying lunch……

This one, was protecting its eggs, and I gave the wall some nice cheerful colours – sweet hey!

Learnings – I thought spiders would be a breeze to photograph; they’re motionless if you don’t disturb them. However, I couldn’t hold a very steady camera angle on them, mostly due to the awkward and often high up positions they were hanging around in.

Auto focus didn’t like them either, probably due to my camera shake taking the focus off the spider and onto the wall, which was more than enough to blur the spider.

Something else I learnt, focal length directly effects what aperture you can select, and being zoomed right into the spiders constrained me to f/5.6, when the lens can go down to f/4, at longer focal lengths. I didn’t know that, and it puzzled me for a bit today until I worked it out!

It made it tricky to capture enough light with me trying to hold a fast shutter, and I actually used the flash to help me out.

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