Sue's Spiders

Updated: Apr 17, 2021

In an attempt to overcome her fear of spiders, passionate photographer Sue Holte-Smith uses her Sigma 105 macro lens to discover a whole new world.

With the most knowledge coming from YouTube videos and Facebook groups, Sue uses a mix of internet guidance and trial and error to produce stunning images of Attulus pubescens, also known as jumping spiders.

Despite only getting her Sigma lens a year ago, her love for spider photography started long before.

"My passion started just over two years ago when a friend encouraged me to start taking photos of spiders in an effort to help me overcome my fear."

Her first attempt - using a kit lens and extension tubes - wasn't met with success as the sight of her arachnid model made her scream so loud that a concerned neighbour rushed to the rescue.

Now, with lots of practice and getting used to the presence of spiders, Sue even refers to the spiders as "beautiful".

Sue says she usually uses an ISO of between 64-100, an aperture of F/11, and a shutter speed of 1/120. She also uses a diffused speed light to help freeze the image.

Looking back on her journey mastering macro photography, Sue shares with us her top tips and says she uses a quote by Elliott Erwitt to inspire herself to take amazing photos: "The whole point of taking pictures is that you don't have to explain things with words."

1) Embrace imperfections. Study the photos that didn’t work and learn from them.

2) Keep shooting! The more photos you take the easier it gets! So shoot A LOT...

3) Try shoot in manual! You will have loads more control of your photos.

4) Spend some time getting to grips with the depth of field

5) Keep it tidy, be aware of what is in your frame.

6) if you shoot insects/spider make sure you focus on the eyes! They are so tiny, but if you can nail it, you halfway there!

8) Know your gear! The last thing you want to do is miss a shot because you struggling with your gear.

7) Most important of all HAVE FUN!!

Sue, who's photography can be found on Instagram and Facebook as Sooks_Photography is starting to branch out with her photography, doing not only nature and macro photography but also water drop photography and has even started the 52-week challenge, 52 Frames


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