Lace lichen

Not as pretty as Spanish moss, but it’s the best we can do. I hiked up the hill behind the house and trespassed on neighboring property looking for interesting lichen at eye level on a half-dead Manzanita where our kids used to have a fort 40 years ago. But as soon as I got started with stacks the daily breeze came up. Might be calm again early Friday.

Specific Feedback Requested

All comments welcome.

Technical Details

Screen Shot 2022-11-09 at 8.31.12 PM

Stack of 30 at f/2.8 to minimize the BG. Not far enough but breeze came up before I could reset the count, and didn’t have a lull. (And then I realized, don’t reset, just quickly shoot another stack from where that one stopped. Duh. ) But I don’t think that would have been fast enough. It’s like the bird flying as soon as you acquire focus.

Minor tweaks in LR and PS, mostly minor BG smoothing in the LL.

Very cool. Can’t say that I’ve seen this type of lichen before. Nothing like it around here that’s for sure. The breeze is the worst! Seems like anytime Kris gets the macro lens out, a monsoon starts up. :laughing:

I’d like to see the rest of the structure, but having it OOF works to make the crisp parts stand out really well, so maybe you don’t have to go back and do more. What I would try to do is get that leading curl closer and more isolated. It’s so different from the rest. I wonder if that’s where the spores gather or some such. I can’t even tell how it grows on that twig. Mysterious!

Good eyes, Diane. Not sure I would have even been able to see it, let alone photograph it! I agree with @Kris_Smith, the OOF backdrop helps to emphasize the wonderful web structure.

That is a nice photo, Diane. The soft background really helped to bring out the subject. I like the branch starting in the upper corner like that showing subject hanging on the way it is. Also nice to see how the branch being OOF coming to focus at the start of the moss. The OOF back part adds to the 3D effect as I see it.

Diane, what a neat find. I don’t think I have ever seen this kind of lichen before. Lace is sure a good name for it. I kind of like it the way you shot it, not all in focus as you would with a focus stack. Very neat.

Thanks, @Kris_Smith, @linda_mellor and @Dean_Salman. I think this is a piece that had torn off a bigger piece and snagged there. (I hadn’t touched it – just as found.) They can grow to interesting shapes that can drape down several feet. There is quite a tangle where they are “attached” to a branch, but there is apparently not any actual biological attachment. Most are well above ground as the deer think the mature strands are tasty snacks.

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Oh yeah, deer love lichen. We had a tree come down in back a few years ago and it was covered in lichen. The girls stopped by and nibbled and nibbled and nibbled. They loved it. It’s a cooperative organism largely made up of fungi and algae. Fascinating symbiosis; neither can survive without the other. I’ve had my eye on the definitive text on lichens for a while now. Used it dips under $100 sometimes.

I agree with @Shirley_Freeman . The out-o- focus area really sets off the in-focus. As is is wonderful.

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Lovely Diane. I certainly haven’t seen anything like this either…only Usnea that seems to hang around in all of our trees as if the tide had just gone out. Are you sure it isn’t plastic :wink:.
Whatever it is, it’s a fascinating and lovely image, and the OOF background is how all closeup and macro photos should be taken in my opinion. Just great. Cheers.

Diane, I like the mix of sharp in the front and soft in the back. That really lets the shape stand out. I’m not sure that full dof would be an improvement (or course you can always ignore the last half of the stack if that’s what looks best…)