Although it is still very dry and the heavy autumnal rains are yet to come, in several local forests it is hard not to find any fungi and toadstools. I went to a mixed beech and oak forest on Friday, and a mostly coniferous forest on Saturday. Both yielded huge amounts of fungi, but both offered completely different species. I will be going back over the next few weeks to check for other species. I would love to see and photograph a Porcelain Fungus, but they are very rare around here.

Of the many species I did find, I liked the small mycenae best, with their delicate forms and translucent hoods. A small change in the direction and quality of light can produce a completely different photograph with these fungi. I find it much harder to create a decent photograph from any of the larger toadstool species.

As for the technique: there is (literally) a day and night difference between the light levels on the hood and underneath. To overcome this issue, you can use some sort of a reflector. I brought a folded first-aid blanket, with a gold and silver side.

The gold side produces surreal colors and warmth. Too surreal to my liking hence I hardly used it. The silver side however produces stunning clarity and some sparkingly fresh colors. I also experimented with indirect flash, by firing the flash into the reflector and back onto the subject. More ideas in my brain, I hope to bring these ideas to life in the next few weeks. As I also re-opened the forest feeding station, it will be hard to divide the sparse sparetime between subjects!

Fungus species; Canon 1D Mark III w. 150/2.8 and extension tube; 0.4s at F2.8 and ISO 200; Tripod and remote release, mirror lock-up and reflector

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