Nature,  Photo Stories

Photo Story: Black and Yellow Garden Spider in a Colorful World

In the summer, I like to walk through fields just after sunrise and look for backlit leaves and flowers to photograph.  On this particular Ohio morning, I was walking through the fields at Allardale Park and noticed this beautiful Black and Yellow Garden Spider backlit by the early morning sun.

Black and Yellow Garden Spider in a Colorful World

Black and Yellow Garden Spider

I thought that the spider would look better front lit by the morning sun so I positioned my tripod around to the other side of the spider.  I also lowered the exposure compensation to avoid blowing out the yellow in the spider in the morning sun.

It was still early in the morning, so the spider was not very active and quite a cooperative subject.  Early morning is a great time to photograph insects.

The spider was still covered in the morning dew which was shining off its back.  It also looks like the spider was still hanging on to some of last night’s dinner.  The out of focus summer wildflowers and leaves made a great background for this Black and Yellow Garden Spider.


Camera:  Olympus OM-D E-M1
Lens:   Olympus 60mm f/2.8 Macro Lens
Focal Length:  60mm
ISO:  250
Aperture:   f/8.0
Shutter Speed: 1/60 of a second
Exposure Compensation: -3/10
Lighting: Sunny Morning


  • Cropped the photo in Lightroom 5.
  • Used Google Viveza 2 to selectively lighten and darken to the photo.  Lowered the brightness in the yellow hot spots on the spider. 
  • Used the Detail Extractor and Lighten / Darken Center Filters in Color Efex 4 to add detail and highlight the spider as the subject.
  • Added detail and contrast pop to the image using the Natural Boost IV filter in Topaz Clarity.
  • Used Topaz DeNoise and a Layer Mask in Photoshop CC to selectively remove the noise from the photo.
  • Selectively sharpened the image using the Unsharp filter and a layer mask in Photoshop CC.

Written by Martin Belan

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