Greetings from Birmingham, England. I meant to get this blog post up sooner, but there just don’t seem to be enough hours in the day anymore.
I had a great time again at UFC 137. The main coverage for the event was from my friend Jed Jacobsohn, but I did have a chance to shoot a little bit. My original intent was to run upstairs to the press box and shoot the two Spike TV fights (Tyson Griffin vs. Bart Palaszewski and Donald Cerrone vs. Dennis Siver) with the 400mm lens. However, Bart decided to end his fight rather quickly before I had a chance to get up to the press box. So, I only shot the Cerrone/Siver bout from up top. That one, as well, was a quick one. Nonetheless, I came away with a few good shots.
We also mounted an overhead remote camera again in the lighting grid. This time, we went much further out towards the center of the Octagon to achieve the “straight over top” look as best as possible. I used a 14mm lens mounted on a Canon EOS 1DS Mark III. Luckily, we had some good fights and good celebrations. I think we came away with a good amount of winners from the overhead. It’s always a gamble, and you can never plan on it being successful. But, when it is, it gives you a good feeling of accomplishment.
I wasn’t able to shoot much of anything for the three main fights, due to the internet dropping out in the arena and having to relocate my edit station to the production truck outside the arena. I did shoot a quick shot of BJ Penn’s entrance with the 400mm from the floor. I love that lens. Can’t wait to try the new version.
Most of my photographer friends have already heard me rave about these guys, but I wanted to post up a quick review of the service and support I’ve received from BorrowLenses.com over the last year or so. I’d like to state up front that I’m a member of their affiliate program, but that in no way has anything to do with my thoughts on their service.
I was turned on to these guys by a friend last year. I had typically used some other well-known rental shops for all my needs up to that point. Going into UFC 123, I was in need of a couple items and my usual sources were all booked. So, I decided to give BL a try. My immediate thought was “How can these guys be so much cheaper?” I was very skeptical, and thought for sure my card would be charged and I’d never see the gear or it would be in horrible shape. To my surprise, the lenses arrived a day earlier than promised and were in like-new condition. I was hooked! I’ve since used them for 6 or 7 more orders. Nothing crazy, just 2-3 lenses and 1-2 camera bodies each time.
One of the other things love about this company is that I can complete my order online. Before, with other rental companies, I’d always have to call to place an order. Sometimes I’d get someone who didn’t know the gear or just didn’t care, and it always seemed like a hassle. So much so that I passed on renting gear unless I absolutely had to. With BL, you can see their inventory in front of you with all the specs and details, including instruction manuals. If something is out of stock currently, they post an expected availability date. They even have the latest products available before even Canon themselves. Two specific recent examples are when I tried to get the 8-15mm 4.0L fish-eye lens and 400mm 2.8L II lens from Canon’s CPS borrow program. Both were unavailable. However, they are available through BorrowLenses.com.
Another cool thing about BL is that they’ve recently partnered with a local camera shop here in Vegas to allow for in-store pickups and returns instead of having to ship the gear. They only charge $20 for the pick-up option, as opposed to $50-75 for shipping. And the store’s location is literally walking distance from my office.
So, if you’re in the market for rental gear, check them out at BorrowLenses.com.