Tuesday, June 15, 2021

My Olympic work featured in local magazines

It is always an honor to be written up in a magazine or newspaper, and I am really excited about this new article since it highlights my Olympic work. This was published last week in numerous magazines in the area. The writer did a really nice job of capturing my story. I hope you enjoy it!






Behind the scenes with Jeff Cable, independent photographer for Team USA

BY MARIA GRUSAUSKAS

 

When asked what his favorite sport is to photograph, Jeff Cable, Olympic Team USA’s only

independent photographer, answered within a shutter speed’s thousandth of a second: “Anything different.”

Cable is a rare breed of photographer whose niche is that he doesn't have one. Beyond the Olympics, there are lizards in Tanzania to capture, exotic tree frogs in Costa Rica, Bay Area bar mitzvahs and events, portraiture for corporate clients like YouTube and Facebook, and so much more—and he loves shooting it all.

“I don’t give a [hoot] what I’m shooting, as long as I’m doing it right,” says Cable, who grew up in San Francisco and is currently

based in Saratoga. “For me, it’s just a general overall passion for photography.”

He’ll never forget the first time he shot bobsledding, for instance. “It was incredible," Cable says. "And so much fun to challenge myself and figure out how to shoot it.”

At the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea, Cable shot 26 different sports. Yet he still has fun shooting water polo or ice hockey again and again, the primary sports he has been photographing at the Olympics since 2008.

“I like to challenge myself to shoot everything differently than I did in previous years. Whether it’s the technology getting better, or me getting better at shooting, taking more risks to get a shot, that’s what

drives me. I want to push myself. I don’t want to get stagnant,” he says via Zoom on the 100-day countdown to the pandemic- delayed 2021 Summer Olympics in Tokyo— his seventh as a photographer.

“To be around some of the best athletes in the world, it’s just such an honor,” says Cable.

As the team photographer he’s in the unique position of being, well, a member of the team. “As a photographer, you’re really a historian,” he says of his approach to his work. “Whether it’s a bar mitzvah or the Olympics.”

Capturing history at the Olympics may be a lot of fun, but it’s also “a ton of work.” While all of us at home get to relax on the couch, Cable gets texts from his friends and family, “I’m watching you on TV!”

as he works from 9am to 3am for three weeks straight, on 14-minute deadlines.

“So if I shoot a game and I’ve got 1,000 images, I have 14 minutes to find the best ones, retouch and resize them and get them back to the U.S. They want it fast. But I relish the challenge,” says Cable, who is sponsored by Canon, and has access to the highest-tech equipment and fastest memory cards around today. He also takes his Olympics-paced work ethic and seriousness with him to all of his jobs, usually getting clients their photo galleries by noon the next day.

In the little downtime that he has, Cable blogs from the Olympics on his website, showing hundreds of thousands of his followers behind- the-scenes snapshots and well- written stories about unforgettable Olympic moments, like seeing the U.S. women’s hockey team win a gold medal against Canada in Pyeongchang—an event he reveals as his number-one bucket list item since he began photographing the Olympics.

“Those girls were out there celebrating until the lights were turned off,” Cable, who celebrated out on the ice with them, recalls.

“I’m one of those lucky people," says Cable. "I just love what I do."


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If you are interested in purchasing ANY equipment, please click here to go to B&H Photo, as I get a referral from them if you enter this way. It does not change the cost to you in any way, but it helps me keep this blog up and running.
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Check out my upcoming photo tours to amazing places around the world. I have photo tours to Africa, Costa Rica, Cuba, Europe, Asia, India and more. And Canon will loan you any gear you want for FREE for any of my tours. 

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Thursday, June 10, 2021

Tokyo Olympics: The story changes every day

The last blog post talked about the challenges of the upcoming Summer Olympics in Tokyo, and since then I have heard from many of you. Most people seem to be hoping that the Olympics can go on, and do so in a safe fashion. Other people are scared that this could become the next big super spreader event, and feel that having these Games is irresponsible. 

I still hope that the Olympics happen and that the athletes get a chance to show their skills that they have practiced for the last 5 years. With that said, I also want to make sure that all the visitors and the Japanese people stay safe and healthy.

In the last week, many things have occurred in regards to the Olympic planning:

It appears that the Olympics will indeed happen. The Olympics machine is rolling ahead and I honestly don't see any way that it will stop.  

Just today I got an email from the International Olympic Committee (IOC) asking for me to provide my vaccination status to them. This is the first time that the IOC has asked this question of the media, and it is about time. I am happy that they are collecting this data. I wish that they would just require vaccination for anyone setting foot in the Olympic park. Remember, there are more than 11,000 athletes and many more support staff. In total, there will likely be 80,000 people who will be traveling to Japan for the Games.

Japan has doubled their vaccination rate from 2% to 4% (19.4 million doses given) in the last few weeks.

The city of Tokyo started closing roads this week, and final preparations are under way.

We have been asked to download a smartphone app which will be required to be turned on when we enter the country. This app will track our locations at all time (mostly for contact tracing purposes).

We are expecting another version of the media playbook in the coming week, which will undoubtedly answer some questions and raise more.

This past week on the Kelly Clarkson show, she interviewed USA Water Polo goal tender, Ashleigh Johnson, in advance of the upcoming Olympics. They featured many of my images of Ashleigh and the team in their piece. You can check it out here or by clicking on the image below.


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Subscribe to the Jeff Cable Photography Blog by clicking HERE!
__________________________________________________________________________
If you are interested in purchasing ANY equipment, please click here to go to B&H Photo, as I get a referral from them if you enter this way. It does not change the cost to you in any way, but it helps me keep this blog up and running.
__________________________________________________________________________
Check out my upcoming photo tours to amazing places around the world. I have photo tours to Africa, Costa Rica, Cuba, Europe, Asia, India and more. And Canon will loan you any gear you want for FREE for any of my tours. 

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Thursday, June 3, 2021

Even more questions about the Summer Olympics in Tokyo

We are now only 50 days away from Opening Ceremony of the Summer Olympics in Tokyo and the uncertainty continues. Just like many of you, I am reading numerous news reports saying that the Olympics will be cancelled, but at the same time I am now getting multiple emails per day from Tokyo confirming that everything is a go. 

At this point, until I get on a plane and head to Tokyo with my credentials in hand, I will not be 100% certain of anything. But, with so little time remaining, I can not imagine that the IOC would pull the plug on the Games. Putting on the Olympics is a monumental task with tens of thousands of people involved. And athletes all over the world are training and competing to have their one shot at making their mark in the sports world. Being so late in the game, it seems almost impossible to stop it.

This morning, there is news that 10,000 Olympic volunteers have chosen to opt out of their jobs due to Covid concerns. Sure, there are more than 80,000 volunteers signed up, but this is still a significant number. We rely on those volunteers for so much throughout the 3 weeks that we are in their country.

I am tracking the vaccination and Covid rates in Japan on a daily basis, and the good news is that the country is trending in the right direction. The big questions are: How many more Japanese people will be vaccinated in 50 days? Are they going to concentrate the vaccinations to the Tokyo area and the people directly involved with the Olympics? And will the Japanese people feel more comfortable having us in their country at that time?


I have been to Japan before and have always found the people to be friendly, helpful and very respectful. But I still wonder how I will be received when I am there to cover the Olympic Games, and obviously someone who is not from Japan.

I recently heard from my friends at Canon USA that they will not be sending any of their people to the Olympics this year. This was sad to hear on many levels. These people are friends of mine whom I was looking forward to seeing over there, and they are incredibly helpful to me during the stressful days. I have no doubt that the Canon Japan people will take care of me as well, but it just isn't the same as having a friendly and familiar face behind the counter. If you are wondering why Canon USA is not sending anyone to Japan, the reason is that those people would be required to quarantine in a small hotel room for 14 days. And when they say quarantine, they mean no leaving the room for any reason, not even to walk down the hallway. Canon would have to have a separate staff of people to bring food to those employees at their door. I know for a fact that I could not hole up in a tiny room for 2 weeks without going stir crazy. This is a lot to ask of anyone.

Even NBC is scaling back how many people they are sending to the Games. Pierre McGuire (Sports Analyst and commentator for NBC) and I have worked many Olympics together. I was watching the NHL playoffs the other day and he was doing the broadcasting. I texted him and asked him if he is going to Tokyo, assuming that he would be there. To my surprise (and his), NBC is not sending him to cover Water Polo, instead choosing to do the commentating from Connecticut. Another friendly face I will not see in Tokyo.

Well...I guess I will sign off for now and reply to all the emails from the Tokyo Organizing Committee regarding transportation, housing, and activity plans. Stay tuned!


__________________________________________________________________________
Subscribe to the Jeff Cable Photography Blog by clicking HERE!
__________________________________________________________________________
If you are interested in purchasing ANY equipment, please click here to go to B&H Photo, as I get a referral from them if you enter this way. It does not change the cost to you in any way, but it helps me keep this blog up and running.
__________________________________________________________________________
Check out my upcoming photo tours to amazing places around the world. I have photo tours to Africa, Costa Rica, Cuba, Europe, Asia, India and more. And Canon will loan you any gear you want for FREE for any of my tours. 

__________________________________________________________________________