Being Ready for Anything and Olympic Photographers

Image from Getty Images – Richard Heathcote


In 2012, I wrote about how Greg Bull got the iconic shot of Gabby Douglas that was the defining image of the 2012 Summer Games.  There’s a great article on Gizmodo on how photographers from AP, Reuters and Getty Images cover the Winter Olympics, and how they do it differently. A few of the main points:

  • The combined photographic teams will each capture about one million images over the course of the games:
  • AP is focused on images to tell a story that can be in newspapers and news outlets, while Getty is more focused on shots of value to their corporate clientele for things like advertisements;
  • Getty laid 22 KM of ethernet cable for the fastest possible transmission of digital images;
  • Each photographer has up to four camera bodies, each set up with a different lens and different settings so they can switch out quickly and be ready for anything;
  • Planning started well in advance with AP doing a walk around through Sochi two years ago to start scouting out the best shooting locations; and
  • In Getty’s case according to Gizmodo, when the photographer clicks the shutter, the photo goes almost instantly to a team of three editors where “the first selects the best image and crops it for composition; the second editor color corrects; and the third adds metadata. The whole editing process is done in 30-40 seconds.”

How does this apply to PR? With us, we get paid to plan ahead and think of everything that MIGHT happen and be ready for it.  Are you?

  • When planning an event, think of the flow, what will happen, what might happen and how to make that work.
  • Who’s on your team?  Do they know their roles?
  • Plan, plan, plan.  Go to the venue.  Know it.
  • What’s your objective?  AP has their’s, so does Getty.




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