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Meet the Australian photographer capturing the world's attention with fungi

Red fungi with long stems.
Mycena viscidocruenta found in the endangered subtropical lowland rainforest of the NSW North Coast

Supplied: Stephen Axford

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They may be very small and to some even ugly - but to photographer Steve Axford fungi are things of beauty that are now capturing the world's attention.

Steve started photographing rainforests around Lismore, on the New South Wales North Coast, about 10 years ago and in retirement the hobby became an obsession.

The next step for Steve was to find a way to create time lapses of his fungi beauties, showing the life cycles of the mushrooms.

"I had a spare shower which I thought the fungus would grow quite well in, so I could bring logs in and put them in the shower and the fungus could grow and I could take time lapse."

"Well I did that and it worked brilliantly, and things have just grown from there."

Steve's fungi time lapse footage has gone viral online, and some people even noticed that he was discovering plants never seen before.

The fungi photographer has also been using his homegrown talents overseas, where he is helping scientists document the rare species of China's rainforests and is even collaborating with the BBC's Planet Earth II.

Australia Wide's Joanne Shoebridge meets Steve Axford to see what fungi photography is all about.

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