TWiP 554 – Talking Photo Gear with LensRentals!

featuring Roger Cicala, Drew Cicala and Frederick Van Johnson

In this episode, I’m joined by Drew Cicala and Roger Cicala of Considering the rapid pace of new gear releases and the increasing gear-lust of photographers everywhere I figured it might be time to do an impartial and honest show focused on the “truth” about photography gear. are uniquely positioned to speak truth from experience after having rented out literally thousands of photo-related gear items. They can speak to not only the overall quality of most gear available today, but also durability over time, patterns, and other important factors.

We also discuss a brand new show we’re collaborating on… the rebirth of the TWiP All About the Gear show in collaboration with!
Use the code “TWiP15” at checkout for 15% off!

About Rodger Cicala, Founder – LensRentals

Roger Cicala spent more than thirty years as a board-certified anesthesiologist and ran the only level-one trauma center in the Memphis, Tennessee region. A scientific background coupled with a strong interest in photography, Roger found himself returning from an Alaskan cruise with a 500 mm telephoto lens that would likely sit ideally on a shelf. Simultaneously the economy took a downturn, as camera equipment prices rose, and an opportunity for rental equipment presented itself. That opportunity became Lensrentals on June 1st, 2006.

Roger committed himself fully to the Lensrentals business, conducting equipment repairs, writing equipment reviews and investing in optical test benches to measure the variance of the hundreds of thousands of individual pieces of equipment in the company’s inventory. His scientific research and understanding of optics have lead industry recognition with articles published by the Optical Society (OSA).

In his spare time, Roger enjoys shooting collimated light through 30x microscope objectives. When shooting real pictures, Roger opts for “something different: medium format, Pentax K1 or Sony RX1R.”

About Drew Cicala, C-Owner – LensRentals

Drew Cicala studied Law at the University of Michigan, graduating in 2010.

Drew oversees the day-to-day operations of Lensrentals, in addition to managing mergers and acquisitions, marketing and software development teams. Since Roger handed over day-to-day operations, the company has prospered under the current ownership team of Drew Cicala and Tyler Beckman.

Lensrentals experiencing approximately 400% growth in 9 years, to become the company largest online provider of photo and video equipment for rental in the US. Drew has been responsible for successfully launching industry-leading programs Lensrentals HD, Keeper and Lenscap+ to serve the needs of customers.

With the revenue growth, Drew has also overseen Lensrentals growth from a single location with 25 employees, to three locations and a headcount of 150 employees.

Drew is married, lives and works in Memphis, Tennessee.


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