By in Pictures

Spiders in close-up

Inspired by AngelSharum's great spider photos, I thought I'd follow her lead and post a couple myself. Spiders tend to be pretty good subjects as they can sit still for ages while you fiddle with camera settings, etc. Try getting a fly to be as cooperative. This one is a harmless British house spider so getting close enough for a close-up (macro) shot was no problem.

chasmac (me)

Depth of Field

The shot above is a good illustration of limited 'depth of field'. Whenever you focus on any subject, a certain distance in front of your subject and also behind your subject will also be in focus. This range that will be in focus is called the 'depth of field. The further away the subject, the greater the depth of field. In close-up 'macro' photography, the depth of field is very small. It's impossible to get all of a long-legged spider in focus at this distance and at this angle with the legs stretched towards you. To maximise the depth of field, you need to narrow your camera's aperture. Choose a value such as f16. This reduces the amount of light passing through, but in this case that was no problem as flash was used (it being an indoor shot).This increases the depth of field, but only to an extent. You just have to accept that you can't get it all in focus at that angle, so focus on the part you want in focus - i.e., the face, in this case.

A Thai Spider

This one below is in Thailand and I've no idea what kind it is or whether it's poisonous or not. All I know is it was blocking the door to the guest house room I was staying at. It's a lot bigger than the one above, which means I didn't have to get so close to get all of it in the shot. The angle also means no depth of field problems as everything is pretty much the same distance from the lens

chasmac (me)

Here's a closer-close-up of it. It has pretty eyes... for a spider.

chasmac (me)

If you're still here, I hope you enjoyed this brief look at some spiders in close-up.

Image Credit » chasmac (me)

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MegL wrote on September 17, 2014, 5:25 PM

Spiders have 8 eyes as well as 8 legs. Just read a post on the internet saying that Britain will have a massive influx of huge house spiders this Autumn because of the warm summer and lots of food available. It has already started here. We have had to put 4 huge house spiders out already in the past week. For a while, I thought it was the same spider with a homing instinct! I hadn't seen any like that in the past 10 or 15 years. Luckily, most British spiders are harmless and I don't mind them. It would be a different matter if they were poisonous.

chasmac wrote on September 18, 2014, 3:24 AM

Thanks for your comment Meg. I'm glad you put the spiders outside and didn't kill them. We'd be overrun with flies if it wasn't for spiders.

LoudMan wrote on September 18, 2014, 1:20 PM

OOOoooOOOOO! More, please!

LoudMan wrote on September 18, 2014, 1:21 PM

You know, spiders are considered sacred within some religions. I find them to be amazing.

chasmac wrote on September 19, 2014, 2:20 AM

I didn't know that, Loudman. That's good because they deserve some good press for all the good work they do. Thanks for your comment.

allen0187 wrote on September 21, 2014, 11:00 PM

Great photos here. I didn't know that spiders can be great photo subjects. Admittedly, if the photos are taken that close, they look menacing and dangerous!

chasmac wrote on September 22, 2014, 1:33 AM

Thanks Allen. I suppose they're not everyone's favourite subject - but I find them and other creepy crawlies great subjects for close-up photography.

BarbRad wrote on September 22, 2014, 1:57 PM

Great shots. Want you to know I came here because I saw you post on Twitter and I will now retweet it.

chasmac wrote on September 23, 2014, 8:11 AM

Thanks BarbRad. That's kind of you. I wonder who posted it on Twitter. I'm one of the few remaining people who don't have a Twitter account, so I never know about those things.

Kasman wrote on September 25, 2014, 4:19 AM

Great photos (again)! I really must start to take an interest in all those options on my camera - usually I just point and press the button!

chasmac wrote on September 25, 2014, 6:29 AM

Thanks Kasman - Yes you need to explore all those camera settings. After all, you paid for them.