Tuesday, October 28, 2008
The Jewels of Autumn
My obsession, it is beginning to seem, is fungi. Fungi, mushrooms, whatever you wish to call them, the sprouting of their fruiting bodies feeds my endless fascination. Edible, poisonous, bitter, and bland, all of them ephemeral gems of the woodlands, the sight of them is a visual treasure regardless of practical uses.
I was walking in the eastern segment of the La Cloche Silhouette Trail of Killarney Provincial Park. There is hemlock wood in a dell nestled between a bald topped granite hill and deeply shaded cliff. It is buttressed by stately hemlock overarching the sky, and always greenly lit. It is difficult to believe in science, and easy to belief in fairies in this space. Seeing the forest floor glowing with large bulbous lilac coloured mushrooms seems like confirmation of every woodland myth ever spoken round the campfire. I knew as soon as I saw them, that I had to capture some of their magic. The camera was inadequate, but my trusty coloured pencils paved the way. While this is not exactly a field guide rendition, they are, for the record, Pungent Cort, Cortinarius Traganus, neither edible nor poisonous, and a little bit stinky. And yes, they really are lilac coloured.
Image: 13" x 6.5" on 11x14 Strathmore Bristol, coloured pencil. This scan cuts off the left & right edges, including my initials, hence the watermark. See my real life mundane name--maybe for the 1st time???