The Lichenologist

“…it’s just the intense feeling of reality just being here.”

(Kerry Knudsen, in the video The Lichenologist)

I’ve always been fond of photographing lichens but Kerry Knudsen is on an entirely different level – he’s been studying lichens for 17 years now. The video linked above is just a short documentary about him, but when I heard him saying what I quoted above it really struck a chord with me – I think this is such a great truth and for me, the reason why I want to, often have to be outdoors and enjoy nature, and look at plants and landscapes.

I guess one might say that nature is the countermeasure to “wytai” (a made-up word from the delightful “Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows” – yes, I totally could not resist adding this;-), described as the sensation when “a feature of modern society […] suddenly strikes you as absurd and grotesque”.

A tiny Lingonberry plant grows out of a crack in a lichen-covered rock at Schneeberg, Mühlbach am Hochkönig, Austria. August 2008.
A tiny Lingonberry plant grows out of a crack in a lichen-covered rock at Schneeberg, Mühlbach am Hochkönig, Austria. August 2008.
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See the photo in context of my blog post “Schneeberg & Schneebergkreuz“.
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5 Responses

  1. Wonderful photograph – there is something about the lichens and mosses that is just ‘other worldly’. And Nature as an antidote to modern society.

  2. Lichen is such a fascinating genus and I am always fascinated by stone walls, old trees and mountain sides where you can find them. I really must get back into photography, I love this shot and it is my kind of thing!

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