Embarking on an adventure spanning thousands of kilometres through ice cold tundra, forests and deserts might be just a dream to many. But in the case of Taiwanese photographer Spark Lo, this dream became a reality as he set out on a grand adventure across North America with his motorbike and trusty Nikon D7500 in tow. Read on to find out how the D7500 helped him capture the wild and untamed beauty of the North American countryside. (Report by Spark Lo)
D7500/ AF-P DX NIKKOR 10-20mm f/4.5-5.6G VR/ FL: 10mm (equivalent to 15mm in FX/35mm format)/ Aperture-priority Auto (f/4.5, 30sec)/ ISO 6400/ WB: Auto
I often chose camp sites for accommodation since I was travelling on a tight budget, which meant that there were usually little opportunities to charge my electronic gadgets. It is in situations like this where the D7500’s battery truly shines. Rated at around 950 shots on a single charge, it allowed me to continue shooting throughout my trip without worry of missing any photo opportunities.
D7500/ AF-P DX NIKKOR 10-20mm f/4.5-5.6G VR/ FL: 10mm (equivalent to 15mm in FX/35mm format)/ Aperture-priority Auto (f/8, 1/1250 sec, EV-0.7)/ ISO 100/ WB: Auto
A shot of fluffy white clouds floating over the vast mountains which I encountered during my trip. The wide dynamic range and high-resolution 20.9 megapixel CMOS sensor really shines in situations like these, as the highlights are displayed beautifully without being blown out, forming a beautiful gradation against the darker mountains in the background. The fine details of the individual tufts of clouds and rocks on the mountains are accurately captured as well.
D7500/ AF-P DX NIKKOR 70-300mm f/4.5-6.3G ED VR/ FL: 300mm (equivalent to 450mm in FX/35mm format)/ Aperture-priority Auto (f/5.6, 1/400sec, EV-0.3)/ ISO 100/ WB: Auto
I usually stopped multiple times along the road to photograph the magnificent landscapes of the United States countryside that I came across. As such, my camera was slung across my shoulder most of the time for easy access. The light-weight and compact D7500 felt really light on the shoulders, making it a suitable companion for long distance motorcycle journeys.
D7500/ AF-P DX NIKKOR 10-20mm f/4.5-5.6G VR/ FL: 10mm (equivalent to 15mm in FX/35mm format)/ Aperture-priority Auto (f/5.6, 1/50sec, EV-0.7)/ ISO 200/ WB: Auto
The sensor of the D7500 sports excellent dynamic range and colour rendition, even when shooting in backlit conditions. In this sunset image shot at Horseshoe Bend, Arizona, USA, I was able to capture the warm glow of the setting sun while still retaining all the details in the relatively darker foreground. Colour reproduction is accurate as well, ensuring that I would always achieve photos that looked just like they would in real life.
D7500/ AF-P DX NIKKOR 10-20mm f/4.5-5.6G VR/ FL: 20mm (equivalent to 30mm in FX/35mm format)/ Aperture-priority Auto (f/5.6, 1/2500sec, EV-0.3)/ ISO 400/ WB: Auto
Like its predecessors, the cleverly placed buttons on the D7500 allowed me to operate the camera even while wearing thick motorcycle gloves. One improvement I particularly liked was the ISO button, which was shifted from beside the LCD screen to behind the shutter button. This allowed me to change my settings on the fly and made my shooting more efficient, in addition to reducing the chances of inadvertently pressing the wrong button.
The notion of travelling across North America on motorcycle did not cross my mind at first, but an incident a few years back made me decide that I should see the world with my two eyes while I was still young and energetic. While you can certainly take an airplane across the continent, that would not be as memorable as crossing it on two wheels. This two thousand kilometre journey across North America was definitely an eye-opening experience and broadened my view of the world. In addition, the journey was also full of gorgeous scenery that I just wanted to share with the world. Having a reliable camera by my side at all times meant that I could capture all the beautiful sights and scenery without worrying about missing a photo opportunity.
In Taiwan, where I’m from, it is more common to travel by motorcycle than by car. As a result, I grew up loving to feel the wind in my hair and sun in my face as I ride since lets me experience the world around me in person rather than view it through a glass window. Travelling through the ice cold tundra and dusty deserts of the North American countryside on motorcycle meant that I had to tackle the harsh conditions head on. While I could wear helmets and gloves to overcome these, my cameras cannot. Thankfully, the D7500 is tough and rugged enough to withstand even the harshest conditions. The layout of physical buttons on the D7500 make it easy to operate even while donning my gear, and the improved AF speed and accuracy make capturing spectacular shots a breeze.
If you are looking for a camera with superb performance, long battery life, fast and accurate autofocus while remaining compact and lightweight, look no further than the Nikon D7500.
Born 1985 in Miaoli County, Taiwan, Spark specializes in photographing low-light scenes and motorcycles. Being a fan of motorcycles himself, he has travelled across the likes of Europe and North America on bike, photographing his journey along the way. He has authored a number of motorcycle photography related books, and is one of the leading motorcycle photography writers in Taiwan.