Friday’s Fabulous Finds ~

I wanted to rent a special lens for a wedding I was shooting last month. After much searching I came across and was thoroughly impressed. I know that many photographers like to go with the “Big Names” in lens rentals – two of which we see at almost every single conference we go to, but after much searching, I think I have found my company of choice.

Lens Giant offers a great selection, they have the lens you want in stock more often than not, unlike bigger companies. They are less expensive than their larger competitors, and the shipping is much lower. The quality of lens you get every time seems like new glass because they are constantly restocking their shelves with new equipment.

The box - I was sooo excited to get my first lens rental!

The box - I was sooo excited to get my first lens rental!

They send you paperwork with all the info you'll need on your rental, how to send it back, and a questionnaire.

They include packing tape, and the return lable to send it back with. My lens even came in a lowpro case!

Included is a foam wrap so the lens doesn't shift when shipping - make sure to keep this and use it when you send it back!

The glorious 17-40mm I rented. I was so excited to use this lens! It is WIDE!

Check out that L glass!

The top photo was taken outside my office window with a 50mm. The bottom photo is with the 17mm. A BIG difference in what you can capture with a wide angle lens.

So here is the lowdown:

Yes, they take reservations. The rental periods span from 5 to 60 days. You can track your package and pick your shipping type depending on how fast you need a rental. Also, sending it back is super easy. They send you everything you need to send it right back to them (everything is prepaid) and all you have to do is drop off the box at your local Fed Ex office – which they give you a print out of your local options, so you don’t even have to look that up. That said, I was a bit paranoid about the box opening with the tape they include, so I put an extra layer of plastic packing tape on my box just to be safe – but it probably didn’t need it at all.

As always – if you know you will need a rental in advance – the sooner you reserve your rental, the more likely you are to get that reservation. But this goes for any place you rent from. As it was, in this case – I was able to rent my lens just fine, about a week in advance. I recommend doing so a month in advance at least – but I had no issues with my short notice rental, and I used regular shipping with no issues. Over all I am so happy I found and I will be using them for all my rental needs in the future – I encourage you to check them out!

Megan + Ben ~ Married!

Megan was at the hall, helping to set up for the wedding, directing those asking for help, gathering things to put on tables, and taking a few deep breaths. She was in designer mode, concentrating, keeping busy, laughing, and clearly ready for the day!

As Ben was getting ready, the house fell silent… It was the much anticipated wedding day, and he seemed cool and confident. When his Father brought him his Grandfather’s tie tack, emotions filled the air. He was anxious to see Megan for the first look and to say “I do” but I don’t think he would have admitted it, as the guys all piled into cars to go to the park.

In the mean time, the girls were buzzing at Megan’s house! She looked beautiful!

But nothing could top the first look. This is when the day became the most real for both Ben and Megan. They lit up, then laughed, then cried, then laughed again, and that is when the thunder rolled forth. It had been windy all morning, with a small threat of rain, but even in FL it often rains for a few minutes then it is nice and sunny again.

As we took photos under this gorgeous tree, the drops began to fall. As we were only five minutes from being done, we ignored it and kept on. And three shots away from finishing, the deluge came. I mean, the skies opened up and it was the torrential downpour of the season! We had a big umbrella (not quite big enough for six), and a tree for cover, but the winds were not so merciful, and the rain came at us under the tree…

All day Megan and Ben were told how rain is good luck on your wedding day – it is said to be a blessing. And as the six of us were all huddled under one umbrella, under a tree, with Megan in the middle so she wouldn’t get wet, as well as our camera gear – you can imagine the sight we must have made.

Then it happened. It didn’t stop. The rain didn’t even slow, it got worse… At first were laughing, and there is nothing like getting caught in the rain to bond with people! Then we started to get a little worried the rain would never stop, and that is when Ben shouted at the top of his lungs: “Thank you! We have been blessed enough now, you can stop blessing us!” We all burst out into laughter. I remembered I had something in my car that we could use as “cover” and get everyone back to the cars without getting soaked so I handed my gear off and ran for my car! I don’t know why I ran, the second I stepped out from the group I looked like I had dove into the lake, but we managed to get most everyone back to the cars fairly dry, and then it started to slow down. But Megan was safely tucked away and her hair and makeup was still perfection!

As the storm passed, everyone got busy at the ceremony site to dry off the chairs and set them back up because we were still having that ceremony outside as planned now that the sun was back out in time for the wedding! *knock on wood* I have NEVER had an outdoor wedding canceled for rain, even when it pours all day, the sun comes out in time to have a gorgeous ceremony. And what a beautiful and touching wedding it was! Afterwards, everyone danced well into the night! Congratulations to Megan and Ben, may your love grow more every day, and may you continue to be flooded with blessings! <3

Featured: Florida Bride Magazine – Online {Nakia + Mark}

When I first met Nakia, it was at a Bridal Show. She was enthusiastic, fun, all smiles, she told me her colors were going to be pink and black, and I immediately thought – I really like this girl, I hope I see her again! When I got home from the buzz of the show, my husband, as always, picked out the cards for my Bridal Show drawing – and she won my Grand Prize! I was so happy to learn she’d won and I couldn’t wait to contact her again. When I did she was ecstatic and, well, the rest is history.

Since then I have had the honor to call Nakia a true friend. When I become friends with my Brides – it reminds me how lucky I am to have some of the most amazing people in my life and how grateful I am to document the love of two awesome people, like Nakia and Mark. It is for this reason, I am so happy that the world can now share in their love, as they were chosen to be featured in the Florida Bride Magazine – Online! Congratulations! <3 To see the full Feature click HERE. Enjoy!