I'm desperately wanting to take pictures of insects and spiders, and have finally accepted I can't achieve the results I want without a macro lens. These are some shots taken over the last few months with my old point and shoot on its macro setting, and my new three quarters SLR, using a non macro lens. It's not only the equipment that's lacking, it's the expertise as well. I'm working on that too...
This spider appeared as a tiny speck high up near the ceiling on the outside of the kitchen window. It required a climbing and balancing act to get the pictures. The eggs weren't visible to my naked eyes, so I got very excited when I saw the photo. I was convinced that I had discovered a new esoteric species of spider, but was assured by a friend that it was a Daddy Long Legs...
... with a body of about 3 cms.
This beauty appeared on the window nearby, so I wondered if it was the father.
It was four days before I repeated the climbing and balancing act. By then the eggs had hatched, and the spider, looking very different, was protectively holding her bundle of leggy babies. That night there was a fierce storm, and in the morning the window had been washed clean. I hope the spiderlings survived.
I rarely see Ladybirds, probably the Top of the 10 Most Wanted insects in my garden, so when I do it is a cause for celebration. But this one's a bit confused. It should be out chasing aphids, not exploring J's jacket.
A magpie often gives me an incentive to make sure there is clean, fresh water in the birdbath.
Next visitor to the window was a snail. Even a common old garden snail looks pretty interesting seen from this perspective. A snail has 4 body parts: a shell, a visceral mass (that you don't see because it's inside the shell), a head and a foot.
I don't know what made these weird and wonderful structures. They're in a shady spot among a group of Leptospermum trees.
Finally, this brightly coloured bug is the Harlequin Bug. As you can see from the second picture, there will soon be more in the garden.
This is a real worry because this innocent looking tiny insect is named on the official Australian biosecurity website, PaDIL, as a Native Australian Pest Species. Now when I see these bugs I don't photograph them, I squash them.
If, like me, you're an aspiring photographer, I suggest you check out Garden Walk, Garden Talk. In this blog Donna generously shares her photographic talent and experience. Her recent series on macro photography is inspiring as well as informative. She even devotes one post exclusively to taking pictures of insects.
And thank you, Susan Windmiller, photography teacher extraordinaire, for giving me the confidence to leave the boring relative safety of Auto, for the stimulating bumpy unpredictable ride on Manual.