Spider Mom

A month or two ago I bought a digital camera; a slightly out-of-date model: A Canon PowerShot A570 IS. I chose the model much because of its compatibility with CHDK, a firmware package that adds extra functionality to the PowerShot line of cameras. When the camera arrived I installed CHDK, drained the batteries thumbing through the thousand different options it contained, then set the thing in a corner to gather dust.

That's not entirely true, of course. You've seen some of the holiday snaps I've taken with it, and my last two YouTube videos were recorded thereupon as well. (Yeah, it records 60fps video too.) Point is, though, that all them there nifty after-market functions added by the CHDK pack, which had much guided my purchase of the A570, were going mainly unused.

Well make way America, as I enter the overpopulated world of amateur photography! Or in other words, check this shit out:

A Spider

Meet Spider Mom. Spider Mom was hanging from a ceiling tile in my basement. When I noticed her I grabbed the camera and the monopod and started shooting. Over the course of probably forty-five minutes I took over one hundred images of her, keeping the best twenty or so.

The Same Spider.

In the end I was able to close to within an inch of Spider Mom to get these shots. I am not using any zoom here. You should have seen me on my knees moving slowly, breathing shallowly, trying not to stir the air, because each time the air stirred the thread Spider Mom hung from would sway imperceptibly in space, blurring these low shutter speed, small aperture shots.

What's the black dot on her head?

The images above have been cropped - but not scaled - and rotated ninety degrees clockwise, all in the hopes that they will better fit your monitor. Please click on the images to view the full sized versions, and when viewing the larger image, make sure that your browser isn't scaling it down to fit the window. These images ought rightly to be viewed at their full pixel count.


"Amazing, Roy. Simply amazing! That you can take such startlingly detailed photographs with a consumer-grade camera... You truly are a wonder of God's own creation. If it pleases your magnificence, may we be allowed, sire, to fellate you?"

No, no... Well, later. As for now I'm sure you're asking yourself why I've named my subject Spider Mom. How have I divined her to be a mother? For that matter, what makes her a her? Verily I say unto you, "check this other shit out."

Awwwwww. Er, Ewwwwww.

Yes, that's a piece of lint stuck in her webbing... You'd have to ask her how it got there.

Unfortunately, Spider Mom was indeed harmed in the making of this film. For in my over zealousness to get more shots containing both her and her offspring I accidentally touched the camera to the line from which she and her baby hung. The line became glued to the camera, and as I gently tried to pull the camera away; as Spider Mom flailed about and crawled down the line toward the camera; in the midst of all this delicately controlled chaos I felt something crawling on my hand.

Mindlessly I brushed it away and returned to the task of prying Spider Mom's line from the camera's housing. When I had accomplished this I found Spider Mom right where I wanted her, still hanging in mid-air much as she had been before. But, oh no! Spider Baby was nowhere to be found.

Thus, when I say that Spider Mom was harmed in the making of this film, it is that worse hurt I speak of; more painful than any mere squishing beneath a shoe. For it is the pain of life continued in the untimely absence of a child. Whether Spider Baby still exists is unknown to me as I believe it is to Spider Mom as well.

Mourn we all for Spider Mom, whose child goes she knows not where. Amen.

1 comment:

  1. Oddly, spiders are said to be the most loyal parents on earth. I really like the fine details you managed to comb out of that first shot quite a bit.