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The Nikon D3100 is great camera. When I first purchased this camera I knew very little about DSLRs and how to use them. The camera is great and doesn't overwhelm you with to many buttons or settings, unless you want to utilise them. The camera also offers help and information about the settings that you can read when selecting them.
The camera has several modes to select from, and by using these in different ways you can create some truly beautiful pictures. The basic modes you have available are portrait, landscape, child, sports, close-up and night portrait. It then also has more advance options; Programmed Auto, Shutter-priority Auto, Aperture-priority Auto and Manual. These settings can be daunting at first when your unsure of what is required for certain photos. But it does get easier, with practice and taking time to read the manual, which as manuals go, is very helpful.
The camera also has many easily purchased and attached accessories available, including my personal favourite, a fish eye lens.
I find as a rule of thumb that the sports shooting mode is a great one to shoot with in most circumstances. The reason why is that it uses a lot of natural light, no flash and if not to dark it doesn't matter if people are jumping all of the place.