I started to think about writing something informative or insightful about lichen, maybe some background about how lichen grow or perhaps something about the beauty of the most humble forms of life… but as I scanned various sites to prepare something, I realized I just wasn’t very interested in lichen. (Lichen-lovers, you can just keep comments to yourselves. I am very comfortable with my own lichen indifference.) The symbiotic nature of lichen is very cool… they are like kefir grains that way. I do like kefir.
But what I find more interesting than lichen are the people who find them interesting. Check out the drawing below, or go here to Wikipedia for a huge, highly detailed version. I do love the range of human hobbies and the passion people sometimes invest in obscure things.
"Lichenes" from Ernst Haeckel's Artforms of Nature, 1904
My mandala is made from an image of crustose lichens, taken on a beach in New Brunswick, 2010.
Lichen Mandala - detail
Lichen Mandala - source image. Click to enlarge