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Posts Tagged ‘spider art’

I am always in awe of the skill and artistry of spiders that are capable of constructing elaborate webs using secretions of their own bodies. I spotted this beautiful little web on Friday as I was wandering about at Occoquan Bay National Wildlife Refuge.

This photo is what I like to consider a natural abstract image. It is so easy for me to immerse myself in the intricate patterns of the web in an almost hypnotic way.

I am not sure what kind of spider made this web, though I am pretty sure the little spider in the center was responsible for it. Kudos to the artist!

spider art

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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When I arrived at the marsh in the early morning hours, it looked like the spiders had been busy all night preparing decorations for Halloween—there were spider webs everywhere.

The webs seemed to have been more hastily constructed than those of the orbweavers that I have observed recently and there did not appear to be any spiders in the center of these webs. What is the purpose of these webs if the spiders are not there to secure any prey that is caught in the web?

I can’t help but admire the amazing artistry of these fascinating little creatures as I examine the interlocking lines and curves of their incredible creations.

I’ve place these images in a mosaic collage—if you want to see larger versions of the images, just click on any one of them and you’ll move into a slide show mode that lets you scroll through them quickly.

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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Temperatures were forecast to soar yesterday, so I arrived early at the marsh—about 6 o’clock— and was treated to many stunning examples of spider art. The early morning light and the dew made it possible to get these shots.

I had thought that it was a bit early in the season for spiders to be active, but I was thrilled to be proven wrong. I never fail to be impressed by the handiwork of the different kinds of spiders and how they are able to adapt their webs to the environment.

I shot some webs with my macro lens and others with a telephoto zoom. In virtually all cases, I focused manually and used my tripod.

Only a few of the webs had visible spiders and I chose to highlight one of those in the first image, which is a close-up of the web shown in the final shot. The webs themselves are not perfect and have gaps and breaks in some places, an appropriate metaphor for the lives that most of us live.

web3_blogweb1_blogweb4_blogweb2_blog

Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved

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The large yellow-and-black spiders (Argiope aurantia) that I have observed throughout the summer seem to have disappeared. I was hoping to see the egg sacs that they produce in the fall, but I guess I’ll have to wait until next year.

However, there must be spiders still around, because early yesterday morning there were quite a few dew-covered spider webs. Last month I did a couple of postings about webs at the same location at Huntley Meadows Park (see Amazing Spider Webs and More Spider Art), but I am so fascinated by the individuality of the webs that I thought I’d post one from yesterday (and I think there might be a few more shots coming). I do not know how the spiders figure out the designs of the webs, but it seems that there is creativity involved in fitting a web into a specific spot, even if there is a “standard” pattern for different varieties of spiders.

This web was located behind the railing of a little bridge that crosses part of the marsh land and joins two sections of a boardwalk. I was shooting into the sun that was still very low in the sky. The sunlight reflecting on one side of the railing suggests that I was not facing directly east. but was angled a little. Behind the web is a field of cattails, though you can’t really see any details.

Spider webs are like snowflakes for me (and it won’t be too long before we see them again). At first they all may seem to be the same, but when you take the time to look more closely at them, you realize each is unique. People are like that too.

Early morning spider web

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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