Sunday, 1 January 2017

Ultraviolet (UV) Photography of Spiders in the Wild

Some spiders move more than others. Depending on the Family, some species are less high strung making them the perfect candidate for this style of photography that requires significantly longer shutter speeds. Longer shutter speeds equate to an increased sensitivity to even the slightest movements making it almost impossible to shoot handheld in the wild.

An example of a cooperative species is Heteropoda davidbowie from the Sparassidae Family. I seldom spend more than 10 minutes on a photo.

Raynox on? No Problem. Here is another species from the same Family.

Higher up in the difficulty-scale are the Net-casting spiders from the Deinopidae Family. Quite a pain to work with for UV work but still manageable. They tend to make micro movements and as i have pointed out earlier, even the slightest change in direction could spell disaster. This particular shot took me almost 90 minutes because it constantly kept moving its chelicerae up and down causing a trail of motion blur.

And right there at the end of the spectrum are spiders from the Salticidae Family. These highly curious spiders are almost incapable of sitting still in front of a lens. Their constant random movements make even regular flash photography a challenge. Coupled with their tiny size, it is considered virtually impossible to get a sharp UV image. I almost gave up on this little guy after chasing him around with a tripod endlessly. It was only after he moved closer to the forest floor that I was able to finally get him to stay completely still for 8 seconds, the duration of my shutter speed!


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  2. This is cool. Not seen ultraviolet light being used in macro photography before and now I want to give it a go!