If you are a videographer you probably have a ton of lenses for your dslr or cinema camera. Having a ton of glass can be nice, but it can also hold you back. On each shoot, you must think about which lens to take for the job. I have been a fan of prime lenses because they allow you to shoot in dark circumstances as well as being able to with a shallow depth of field (bokeh). However, with primes, you would need to zoom with your feet to the subject or change out the lens for a shorter of longer field of view (depending on the circumstances). Carrying a bunch of primes can get heavy, and slow you down.
The news I am about to share is not news at all, these two lenses have been out for a while now. I have had the opportunity to buy both and experiment with them. Sigma has really made a name for itself over the past few years. Their design and optical performances of their Art series lens have been off the charts. If you only had the chance to own two lenses for video I would highly recommend the Sigma Art 18-35mm and the Sigma Art 50-100mm. Both lenses are for crop sensors, that means they will not perform will on full frame cameras such as the Canon 5D Mark III. But if you have a crop sensor camera such as the Canon 80D or a Canon EOS Cinema camera such as the C100 they will work out just fine. The Canon C100 has a 35mm sensor which is about the same size as a Canon 80D sensor.
Both lenses have an aperture range: f/1.8 to f/16 which is stunning. They also have one SLD and three FLD elements. Shooting with the 50-100mm which if used on a Canon C100 would be the equivalent to 80-160mm can be great. Sometimes you do not need the 70-200mm lens, you only need half of that….and that is when the Sigma 50-100mm 1.8 comes in. For instance, I was shooting an interview the other day and all I had with me at work was a 70-200mm 2.8 lens. I was hoping to get more background in the shot, but I had to reframe it since I only had the 70-200mm lens. There was no room for me to back up, I just reframed the shot. However, if I had the Sigma 50-100mm 1.8 with me there would be no problem because of the short length. I also use this lens for most of my wedding videography. I shoot all the dances, toasts, cutting cake, garter and boutique tosses with it while my wife uses the other Sigma 18-35mm 1.8.
The Sigma 18-35mm 1.8 is great when you are getting close to your subject. In fact, this 18-35mm lens is more like a 28-56mm lens. The bokeh you get from these lenses is awesome. You can get close to the subject and still get focus when using the Sigma 18-35mm lens. I use this lens for intimate shots such as when a bride is getting ready, or if I am getting broll in a small room. Both lenses can be used at their maximum 1.8 aperture with the picture staying crisp and focused.
The 50-100mm lens is a tank. I have tried to run and gun with it on my monopod, but it is tough to do so due to its weight. I like to have a tripod when using this lens. The quality and durability is great, and you can own both of these lenses for under $2000. I was always concerned of the zooms and their 2.8 f stop and only wanted to use primes for their 1.4 or 1.8 f stop ability. But now with these two Sigma Art lenses I do not have to worry about the primes any longer. Stop buying tons of lens, and just choose these two, you will be happy you did.
Below is a video I shot using both lenses. The first shot is not from a Sigma lens, but all others are.
I have been working in television and media for over 18 years. My experience includes news photojournalist, editor, producer and storyteller. I am a five time Telly Award winner.