The Lichenologist


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I was on a nature walk at a local school board maintained nature site, when I met a Lichenologist. As we walked and talked my first and only hurdle was my mispronunciation of lichen. Clearly not a good start especially as I kept making the same mistake.

We did discuss more interesting subjects, the what, why and where of lichens and more specifically the photography thereof. I had seen some incredible microscopic pictures of lichen at a local museum that looked like modern art, it turned out that these were photographed for a book he authored.

The Lichenologist, had a little jewelry magnifier with a battery-powered light. At 10x magnification he showed me how the most common of lichen were extremely beautiful (texture, form, color, shadow and an infinite variety of shapes). It makes you think what else we miss when we walk around.

A few months later he held a seminar on lichen where the participants used microscopes and books of “keys” to identify types of local lichen. This was fun and very interesting and shortly afterwards I went to have a look at what microphotography might involve.

I doubt that I will be doing much microphotography, the complications and costs of getting down to magnifications below 5X, at the moment defeat me. But here’s the key point. I met an interesting man, who taught me something, and I now have another photographic challenge on my shelf that I know is doable just not quite yet.

P.S. Based on one of the comments I received the photograph above is apparently of moss, which hows you how much I have to learn!

6 responses

  1. stefanieshaw

    And thank you for sharing that challenge. That sounds really neat!


    April 12, 2013 at 6:13 am

  2. Lovely photo but I think you’ll find this is moss and the little fellows sticking their heads up are peristomes. I have photographed them a fair bit over the years. check out the Moss Appreciation Society on Facebook.


    April 12, 2013 at 6:15 am

  3. LOL! impressed that you actually met a lichenologist, which I’ve never heard of, that you followed up by going to his seminar, that you worked on the microphotography, and most of all that you laughed at yourself re the moss photo!!!!! Nicely done Victor


    April 12, 2013 at 8:11 am

  4. It opens up a whole new world.


    April 12, 2013 at 1:35 pm

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