Monday, 8 September 2014

Combretum imberbe (Leadwood)

We sat under the Leadwood tree, watching the dassies (rock rabbits) on the one side, and me, quietly trying out different ISO settings on the camera. The DSLR is very forgiving in auto mode, which is great for quick snaps. But when I have the time to explore, I try different settings - this time ISO sensitivity.

Normally, a high ISO setting would be useful in low light. The high ISO and high shutter speed in low light reduce the grainy appearance of photographs. What would happen in daylight, in the African outdoors?

In these two photographs, the ISO is set to 1600. The shutter speed in the top photo is 1/200th of a second. In the second photo, it is 1/2000th of a second. That is, there was too much exposure in the top photo, and it almost appears in black and white. But it does show off the detailed structure of the tree.

Of course, a high shutter speed would normally be useful for bird photography, for example. In the photo below, ISO 1600, shutter speed 1/1600th of a second - not a bad shot.

Lilac breasted roller in flight, Lesley Beeton, 2014

Friday, 15 August 2014

Devil's Trumpet (Datura stramonium)

Seen on a bush walk, whilst climbing into a cave. 

This plant is also known as Jimson weed, devil’s trumpet, angel’s trumpet, devil’s weed, thorn apple, crazy tea, stinkweed. The seeds are known as malpitte (crazy pips). 

All parts of the plant are extremely poisonous.

Tuesday, 6 May 2014