Monday, July 30, 2012

2012 Summer Olympics: What it is like to be an Olympic photographer

Last night, while riding the bus back to my apartment, I looked back at the day and wrote down exactly what I accomplished (and didn't). Just so that all of you can get a feel for a typical day at the Olympics, here is what my day looked like yesterday:


7:45 Got up (uh oh - no hot water - cold shower)
8:45 Bus to the Main Press Center (MPC)
9:00 Stop at the media food court to slam an Egg McMuffin
9:15 MPC - check in - clean gear
9:30 Go to Canon's loan desk and borrow 200-400 lens
9:45 Run for the bus to the aquatics center
10:15 Shoot swimming preliminaries
1:00 Finished shooting swimming
1:15 Head to basketball

1:40 Slam a BLT sandwich at the media room of basketball while downloading (this is where those 1000x memory cards and USB 3.0 reader really come in handy!)
1:50 Find a shooting position in basketball
2:00 Edit while waiting for the game to start
2:30 Shoot USA vs. France basketball game

4:30 Finish shooting basketball
5:00 Take bus back to MPC
5:45 Download basketball images and post blog 1 (images from yesterday)
6:15 Slam dinner (Fish and chips of course!)
6:30 Take bus to water polo venue
7:00 Set up remote camera
7:15 Get into position (entry to the pool area is limited to certain times before each game)
7:30 Shoot USA waterpolo game
8:45 Shoot images in the mixed zone (an area where the press can interview the athletes)
9:00 Download game shots and interview shots
9:15 Remove remote camera setup from rafters
9:30 Edit water polo images
10:15 Post images to Team USA Waterpolo
10:45 Write blog 2
11:00 Take the press bus back to the MPC
12:00 Take the press bus back to condo and recharge all batteries for tomorrow


Am I complaining? Heck no - I am at the Olympics!


BTW - I am posting this as I slam my dinner and go through images. :)

8 comments:

Jesus de la Cruz said...

Wow, so crazy day, The best for next days.
Got one question for you, about the Canon Loan Center,
Did you borrow the 200-400 from Canon for free???

cpagility said...

They have the 200-400 lens available?

It sounds like an amazing experience. Enjoy!

cpagility said...

You say you picked up the Canon 200-400? Is that right? What do you think of it? Congratulations on shooting at the Olympics have a great time!

Ken Glidewell said...

Doing what you do would be my ultimate dream... Shooting sports is my favorite topic...How were you able to pull such a great assignment?

Jeff Cable said...

Here are the answers to your questions. Brief since it is almost 11pm here and I still have more to do.

Yes - I borrowed to 200-400 and it is amazing! Canon and Nikon both loan lens and cameras to all Olympic photographers. They also service here onsite. That is an amazing service for us. I am like a kid in a candy store.

The lens is a prototype (hand built) and not out yet.

As for how I got here - that is a VERY long story. A lot of hard work, persistence and knowing the right people. :)

T.Irwin said...

I've loved reading your updates! You are having the time of your life (it sounds like)... definately a time to add to the memories!!!

Nicholas Grobbelaar said...

Hi Jeff

You metioned setting up a remote camera at the water polo, I am shooting a tournament this weekend and want to put up a remote camera, where did you put yours? I am considering putting one in the goal posts with a superclamp and a rain cover. do you think this is do-able or dangerous wishful thinking?

Jeff Cable said...

I put the remote camera up in the rafters of the venue. Trust me, there is NO WAY that the Olympic committee would let me mount a camera in the net at the Games!

I do think that mounting a camera there would be awfully risky. One errant shot and your camera could be toast!