First, a very big thank you to http://www.jewelrybytarabiz.blogspot.com/ for featuring me on her blog today! She has a wonderful blog with regular features on artists and crafters, and her etsy shop is full of positively amazing stuff!!
It was almost comically pleasant outside today -- the kind of day where you pretty much have to just cancel everything and spend the entire day outside. The leaves aren't really in their autumn colors yet, though some that turned early were already blown off. But the rest are still mostly summer green, though starting to brown around the edges. In the woods there is already a thick carpet of gold beech and birch leaves.
Mushroom hunting is a little more difficult because of the thickening layer of leaves on the forest floor. The Psychedelic Slug painting in this post has been marked down temporarily to mark the end of the forest mushroom season. (and again, I note, I never pick mushrooms, I only photograph them...do not disturb your fungi friends!)
Above, you see some growing on a log at Bowman's Hill Wildflower Preserve last week. Below, from Clayton Park this week. Just out of frame there was a fuzzy white and black caterpillar inching along. Some internet research suggests they were destined to become Hickory Tussock Moths. I saw several in the forest in the same vicinity. They kept wanting to crawl onto the path that is often traveled by bikes so I moved them back off the trail. Reading up on them I see that some people can have bad allergic reactions to handling them. I did not have a reaction, but I just let them crawl onto a finger and quickly moved them out of the line of the path...but I should try to remember that bright white and black marked things with spines jutting out of them, might just be trying to send a "do not touch" message.
It's funny, because I had just been reading the horror story "Couching at the Door" by D.K. Broster, which deals with someone who is haunted by something long and furry that resembles a feather boa or caterpillar. So seeing furry caterpillars everywhere was in keeping with my mindset -- rather like the time I read "The Willows" while traipsing through a swampy area with willows growing everywhere. Ahhhh, atmosphere!