The Essay - The Scientist and the Romantic - The Lens and the Lichen

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Nature writer Richard Mabey reflects on his lifelong relationship with science and the natural world. He explores how a lens can enhance and at times distort our view of nature. He discusses how the late 18th-century Claude glass influenced the Picturesque movement in art and the excitement of looking at lichens through a microscope. As our understanding of science has developed, Richard also points out how our understanding of the way we 'view' nature has changed - whether it's a new way of looking at the canopy of the rainforest or the first photo taken from space which shows us planet earth.