Saturday, August 4, 2007
One helpful bit of advice I read is to always be on the look out for color, preferably bright, vivid color. And when you see it STOP. Whether it's a bright red, neon mushroom in the dark forest or a child's bright yellow rain jacket on a gray day or a golden-orange reflection in a mountain stream as the sun sets --when you see vivid color stop and capture it. The trick is to train your eyes to see color. Which sounds crazy. But the truth is that we pass by bright colors everyday without even noticing them. If you really want to wow someone with your photos, nine-times-out-of-ten it will be with a photo that has color that pops.
As far as I can tell, these are "vermilion hygrophorus" mushrooms. There are lots of guidebooks out there for identifying birds, bugs, trees, plants, and insects. The one that has proven the most helpful to me is the Reader's Digest guide to North American Wildlife. While there's no way that a single volume can cover every species of plant and animal, I have found it helpful in narrowing down the choices and getting me started. It's logically organized and beautifully illustrated. I have the 1982 edition (which is the exact same as the "updated" edition) which can be bought used via Amazon for 1 cent!