FAUNI GENA: Named for the mesmerizing Tangerine Dream classic from 1973, Fauni Gena was the only name appropriate for this series of photos. Quite common in the southern United States, this sprouting green lichen grows yearly on rocks, trees, fences, and many other common objects. Its unusual color has always captured my attention, especially on overcast days when it's vibrant tenor really strikes the eye. In many ways it is reminiscent of the famous red weeds in the H.G. Wells novel War Of The Worlds. I am not certain of the origins of Fauni, but many references suggest the word is Latin for Faunus – horned god of forests, plains and fields. The context of Gena varies, but it may have roots in the word genus, a scientific manner in which to classify plants and species. This particular lichen is basically an algae subclass known as Usnea, more commonly known as Old Man's Beard. Etymology aside, the organic sounds of this Tangerine Dream gem really speak to Usnea's quiet, humble nature. It simply works for me... peaceful and somber. It keeps me grounded.

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