Richard Bell's Wild West Yorkshire Nature Diary, Friday, 6 August 2010

ink-cap ink-capTHESE INKCAPS, growing in a damp, shady corner by an ash stump, are past their best but, like most fungi, I find them attractive subjects to draw because of their relatively simple shapes (no masses of foliage to grapple with) and the fact that they don't blow about in the breeze.

There's a soft breeze whispering in the hedgerow (I'm here down my mum-in-law's garden again this morning) and sparrows are chirping.

Around the fungi in this corner there's:


Having drawn the inkcaps, I notice more fungi when we check out another Rhubarb walk on a rainy evening. It's the recent warmth and moisture that has resulted their growth. My little Olympus Tough camera is ideal for photographing fungi; it's so small that I can hold it down at ground-level and manoeuvre it into corners that I couldn't otherwise reach. I put my hand below the lane-side vegetation and twisted it around to get this view (right) to show the underside of the cap, which I couldn't see from the lane.

It's a bit hit-and-miss because from that angle I can't control what the auto-focus latches onto. The camera has a macro and a super-macro setting, which is the one that I used for these. Even in the low-light of an overcast evening down amongst the vegetation it has no problems rendering what seems to me like an accurate depiction of the colours.

As the the underside is pitted with pores, rather than slatted with gills, like a mushroom, I think these must be Boletus.