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Photographing Fungi

( Originally Published 1902 )

HERE we come to the easiest kind of photography easy and at the same time most satisfactory. Many of the fungi are not only beautiful in colour, but their forms and markings are very striking and show to full advantage in a photograph. Take, for example, such varieties as the different amanita, the delicious morel, or even some of the clevaria : with a little care in arranging them, very beautiful photographs may be made.

In most cases it is advisable to photograph the specimen as it is found growing. With few exceptions, they are unaffected by the wind, so that exposures of almost any length may be made, provided the surrounding vegetation is not easily disturbed by the passing breeze. In all cases where the mush-room is on the ground the camera must be placed low, even within a few inches of the ground. When for any reason it is necessary to remove the mush-room in order to photograph it indoors, be sure to cut a large enough piece of the surrounding earth or bark to show the nature of the location. For carrying such bulky specimens a large flat basket is most convenient, and that must be carried with care or your specimens will break. It is so much easier to carry the camera than the mushrooms that there is every reason why the photograph should be made on the spot. When it is thought necessary to show the root of the mushroom, lay a suitable specimen alongside of the growing one. In any event it is just as well to show the under side, as it is that part which aids so much in the identification of the species.

Isochromatic plates are necessary for all the brightly coloured varieties, while ordinary plates will answer for those which are of more quiet colour. Almost any lens of moderately long focus will do for this work ; the camera should have a long bellows and have back focus and single swing ; this latter is made necessary by having to place the camera so near the ground.

Close-Up Pictures In Your Travels

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