Reptiles can make fascinating photography subjects. Their prehistoric appearance and highly detailed skin can be quite amazing. When on holidays in warmer locations I do enjoy capturing images of wild reptiles. Of course one needs to be careful in such environments as many species are venomous.
For most of us, visiting a zoo can provide photographic opportunities that would otherwise be impossible. During a recent visit to the Metro Toronto Zoo I used one of my Nikon 1 J5’s to capture some reptile images.
NOTE: Click on images to enlarge.
Using a camera like the Nikon 1 J5 has some advantages as well as some challenges. The 20.8MP BSI sensor in the J5 is quite a bit better than the Aptina sensors in my V2’s in terms of dynamic range and colour depth. This helps to create richer images in terms of colour.
Unlike the V2, the Nikon 1 J5 does not have a low pass filter so images from the J5 are a tad crisper coming out of the camera.
This can help create a bit more skin detail with these types of images.
The added resolution of the Nikon 1 J5 at 20.8MP compared to the 14.2MP sensor in my V2’s, provides additional flexibility in terms of cropping potential.
While I am getting used to using a camera without an EVF I find that I cannot hand-hold the J5 at quite as slow shutter speeds as is possible with my V2’s.
There are advantages having a flip screen on the back of a camera. My wife was sitting on a low bench and happened to notice this reflected image. By holding the J5 down low and tilting the screen I was able to capture the above photograph.
One of the things I’ve always loved about the Nikon 1 system is the fast and accurate auto-focus. The Nikon 1 J5 has 171 auto-focus points compared to 135 in my V2’s. This provides a bit more opportunity for precise auto-focusing of images.
I’m still not as diligent as I need to be double-checking my camera settings before I capture images. Sometimes I nudge the PASM dial when I put a J5 nose down in my camera bag and change my shooting mode. The odd time I activate the WiFi control inadvertently, and I sometimes adjust exposure compensation rather than move the single auto-focus point around.
These types of operator errors should reduce as I become more familiar and disciplined when using my J5’s.
I’m certainly pleased with the performance of my pair of Nikon 1 J5’s. They will constitute 2/3 of my ‘travel kit’ bodies for future adventures.
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