I was very much into photography many years back when pocket digital cameras were in fashion. I lost interest once I had sold it after just a month or two, but when I bought the Nikon D3100 I was in love with photography again.
The camera is pretty compact for a DSLR and over time I noticed it is a bit uncomfortable - even though there is rubberised padding to make a better grip. A lever on gives access to all the modes on the camera. These information as well the shooting information gets displayed on the lcd panel on the back of the camera which also acts like the viewfinder. Its a lot easier to use the LCD panel than the eye piece. Navigation between menu context is also easy.
Shooting is very good on this camera because the shutter speed is swift and the sound of clicking to take a picture is very satisfying. Pictures can be viewed immediately to see which one turned out well and considering the shutter speed - it allows for multiple pictures to be taken in quick succession.
Images produced or of great quality and printing the pictures results in an almost classical SLR photo - in fact I would say this camera produces sharper and brighter pictures because of its image processor.
The image processor also includes image stabilisation which is called the VR. It reduces a lot of the shakiness (especially of those who are serious coffee drinkers) and so helps the auto focus a lot more. The lens obviously allows for a greater manual focus and zooming and there are plenty of ISO modes to choose from. ISO 800 worked the best I think for most lighting conditions.
Unfortunately the camera doesn't a good enough video recording. Although it supports 1080p I don't think it stands up much to a camcorder and dare I say even the XPERIA Z2. However, having said that, I didn't buy the camera for recording videos and it is very capable of doing what it is primarily intended for - and that is to take brilliant pictures every time.