Spider, I See You Hiding in the Window

Spider, oh spider, why are you sitting in my window? For bugs, or sport, or to bite me in my sleep?

I was actually working on a different model when an idea struck me. Wanting an object to look abandoned and old, I grabbed a spider web and threw a black spider in it for fun. But, the web was too large, so I left it off to the side. Getting back to it yesterday, inspiration took a different direction.

[Image]Window Spider by Steven Reid, on Flickr

Window spider, don’t bite me.
Returning to the original build, the spider and its web struck me. Although not touching the scene for over a month, I still had the thought of putting the web inside a box. Deviating from my initial undertaking, I built a box to put the web in. Too small, I started to make a bigger box before abandoning the idea for something else.

Instead of a bigger box, I reminisced about a time when spiders would nest in my window. When we lived in Georgia, a large spider covered our window with a web. There was a light outside that would create cast a shadow of the web and his body on our blinds. A little too creepy, I decided to take a more subtle route.

Building a window.
I built up a window around the smaller web and spider. Yes, the walls are black, I thought the darker color looked better. No, my walls aren’ black, but the spider’s color did need to change. I turned it red after verifying you can get it in that color.

I spent some time finding a good way to anchor the web. The first few pieces or positions I used didn’t work. I swapped out pieces until I arrived at the final configuration. Who knew two pieces would be such a pain.

It was fun putting the window pieces together. The glass sits on a ledge, but you can’t see it in the final render as I decided to focus on the spider instead. Once exported, it was time to get it into Blender.

Focusing on the subject.
I had thought to do a night scene, using some focal blur to create bokeh. Although a nice idea, the window tended to get in the way. Plus, it required lighting the spider which didn’t appeal to me. In the end, I scrapped the idea for something else.

Importing an image as a background, I stuck with an HDRI to light the scene. After adding in some focal blur, I did my first test render. Yuck, I had fingerprints all over the window. Time to tweak the materials.

The second render looked much better and became the final version. I used filmic to improve the lighting. In the nightly build I’m using you can also select different looks, even after you render. Fitting my mood, I used the Fujifilm F-125 in the final render which gives it a yellow tint.

Now, as long as the spider stays in the window, we’ll get along well. If not, the broom is coming out!

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