There was an article recently here in DIYP about 5 reasons why you should own at least one prime lens, I strongly agree to this. I normally tell the new photographers that the next lens they should buy is a prime lens. Here is the thing though, after buying a prime lens make sure not to sell your kit lens too fast. Here are my 6 reasons why you should keep your kit lens. I am a Nikon shooter, so expect Nikon examples, but everything here is true for Canon too).
Both Nikon and Canon has sell a standard 1855 kit lens. There is the 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G AF-S DX VR for Nikon and the EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS II for Canon. Both are around $200. considering that those lenses come bundled with entry level cameras for as low as $400 (lens included) you can get the general ball park those lenses aim for.
1. For Backup
You never know when your main lens will break, so it’s nice to have a small & lightweight lens for backup.
From time to time I still go back to using my kit lens because of the near focusing distance it had, I still regularly use my kit lens for food photography and product shots because I can go very close my subjects. Now, you can get a macro prime lens (both the 105mm and the 60mm are good options, but they come with a price tag when you are starting out)
3. After All It’s A Pretty Sharp Lens
When I’m shooting inside a studio, I normally shoot at f8-f11, and the kit lens is as sharp a lens as any. Probably even more than some when shooting at this apertures.
I kinda hate to be doing this, but this shot of the D3 was taken with a D7000 and kit lens. (while the D3 was shot with the 24-70). All were shot in the same lighting at ISO 200, 1/160 @ f8. Can you tell the difference?
4. Fast Focusing
Focusing with the kit lens is actually pretty fast compared to some lenses. Probably becasue it is small and simple. Here is a tip, make sure you know where to focus, it’s better to focus on areas that have texture and contrast. You will focus faster.
5. It’s Cheap!
No need to worry too much if you lose it. (or if it burns for some reason)
The last but I think the most important thing about keeping your kit lens is you’re only limited by your imagination (forgot who I got this from). It will not be about the gear but about how you use what you have which will make you a better photographer. Don’t get me wrong, the holy trinity of lenses and prime lenses will be a big help in your photography, just don’t let having a kit lens stop you from getting the shot you want. All the photos below were shot using a kit lens.
Do you use a kit lens? Share your photos below