When I came across this creature, it was crossing a sidewalk hurriedly. Luckily, as I started fumbling with the controls of my camera, it found something edible and stopped. That gave me a chance to photograph it without having to chase after it. It didn't even mind the ruler I placed next to it.
The scale is in millimeters.
If I am not mistaken, this was a convergent lady beetle (Hippodamia convergens) larva. Compare my photos with this one.