Photography: "Mirrorless Mark" – The Often Overlooked Kit Lens

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Image copyright Mark Toal. All rights reserved.

by Skip Cohen

It’s “Mirrorless Mark” Monday thanks to my good buddy Mark Toal. I love him sharing an image and talking about kit lenses because we’ve all done the same thing. We buy a camera that comes in a kit and then so often forget about the quality of that lens simply because it’s part of the kit.

To help artists raise the bar on the tools they have to capture the very best images, most manufacturers offer kits. In fact, going back to my early Hasselblad days one of our very best cameras was the 500 Classic, which came complete with a camera body, A12 magazine and an outstanding all-purpose lens, the 80mm. Photographers added on to the kit based on their photographic needs. 

Panasonic offers several cameras in kit configurations, giving you a great lens to have in your bag and at the same time a cost-savings because of the kit configuration. Check out the complete LUMIX camera line with a trip to the Panasonic store by just clicking on the GX9 or 12-60mm lens below!
  
And, to keep tabs on whatever Mark’s shooting and where remember – He’s never without a LUMIX camera. Check out more of his images and follow him on Facebook and Instagram​​


by Mark Toal
 
I recently returned from a five-day training event where Panasonic, Nikon, Canon, and Sony let attendees use their cameras for the week. Every morning we had a photo review with the images projected on two large screens. I was not only amazed at the quality of the images these new photographers took, but that they frequently used the kit lens.
 
A kit lens is a term used for the lens that comes with a camera. They are usually looked down on as not being sharp or interesting. My experience is they are often as sharp as the best lenses; they just aren’t fast often having variable apertures from f/3.5-f/5.6.
 
I’m not suggesting you don’t buy a faster lens for low light use or to get a more shallow depth of field or a longer telephoto for bird or sports photography, just don’t overlook that kit lens you probably put in the bottom of your camera bag.
 
Whenever I receive a new Panasonic camera I head to the local car museum, The World of Speed, in Wilsonville, OR to try it out. It’s indoors, which is important in Portland and the cars have a lot of detail.
 
The photo above shot of the red Ferrari was taken with the LUMIX GX9 and the Lumix 12-60mm f/3.5-5.6 lens that comes with the camera. 
Click on either product for more information