Monday, 9 February 2015

Hyllus diardi, The Gentle Giant.

Hyllus diardi is arguably one of the largest Salticids in the World, and in my opinion, the most beautiful. My fascination with these macnificent jumping spiders started many years ago when I first heard about them, and was shocked to know that they actually existed in mangrove swamps, here in Singapore! It wasn't until early last year that I set out to find and document them for myself. It took me ten, yes, TEN days (day trips) of looking around aimlessly in the mangrove swamps until I spotted my first specimen. And of all places to find it - on a dustbin! How convenient and anti-climatic. :)

I have now learnt to spot them pretty easily, especially the females (they have bristle-like horns protruding from the head), sometimes spotting more than one specimen in a single macro session.

Below are some of the shots I took early this year. All pictures were taken on site, handheld.

*Click on image to enlarge*

1) Oh, Hello.

2) What is not to love with a face like this?

3) Females specimens have bristle-like horns, unlike the males.

4) By adjusting the aperture, I was able to capture the contrasting background made up of some yellowish plant.

5) Check out her "moustache". :)

6) I love playing with my camera settings to achieve various Depth-of-Field for each shot.

7) I stopped down the aperture from f5.6 to f11 to highlight the full glory of her abdomen.

8) To achieve this contrasted look, all i did was to place a piece of dried leaf behind the subject. Never stop experimenting (Ethically, of course) !

9) This dreamy-looking picture was achieved by removing my DIY lens hood, and pointing the flash (undiffused) directly towards the lens.

11) To achieve this shot, I illuminated the subject from the side and the front.

12) Back to normal backlighting.

Thank You, Miss spider  for being such a wonderful model. Now you can easily see why it is touted as one of the most beautiful spiders in the World. :)

1 comment:

  1. Amazing Post and Write up.. bro amazing Pictures too.. waiting to see this beauty myself..