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Winter Sports 2018 Blog

Behind the Camera: “It's all about preparation” by Joel Marklund

Joel Marklund, Sports photographer and Nikon European Ambassador

PyeongChang, Feb 8, 2018 - Joel Marklund, Chief Photographer and Nikon European Ambassador: “Much has already been said about the 2018 PyeongChang Olympics. It's really, really cold (even for me - born and raised in Sweden) and a lot of traditional daytime events such as biathlon, cross-country skiing and ski jumping will be held either at late afternoon or night. So far, for me it's mostly been about two things: logistics and preparation.

The first four days of this Olympics I've shot only 732 images, of which 132 have been transmitted on the wire to our clients. Most coverage included press conferences or events, practice sessions and general preparation shots. The rest of the time was spent installing remote cameras at the roof of ice hockey arenas, attending meetings and travelling between venues to inspect that internet cables are working, in order to send pictures straight from the camera to editors back in Sweden for live editing. Doesn't that sound like much of fun?

However, all this is done in order to be ready for 17 consecutive days of Winter Olympics. As Chief Photographer, my mission is that my team of photographers should not need to worry about logistics or technical issues too much, instead they should be able to concentrate on taking great images. There's not much room for errors. The same way the athletes must perform on their absolute top-level, so must we photographers. For that, preparation is key.

Part of the preparation is to dress warm. During the Opening Ceremony we expect temperatures even below -20C. We have a saying in Sweden: ‘There's no such thing as bad weather, just wrong clothes.’ So... Let's fight the cool and get this games started!”

Volunteers watch Ryom Tae Ok and Ju Sik Kim of North Korea during a Figure Skating practice session for Pair Skating ahead of the 2018 Winter Olympics on February 6, 2018 in PyeongChang. Nikon D5 | AF-S Nikkor 400mm f/2.8E FL ED VR | ISO 3200 | 1/2000s | F2.8 Copyright: Joel Marklund / BILDBYRÅN
Ju Sik Kim and Ryom Tae Ok of North Korea during a Figure Skating practice session for Pair Skating ahead of the 2018 Winter Olympics on February 6, 2018 in Pyeongchang. Nikon D5 | AF-S Nikkor 400mm f/2.8E FL ED VR | ISO 3200 | 1/2000s | F2.8 Copyright: Joel Marklund / BILDBYRÅN
Felix Elofsson of the Swedish freestyle moguls team during a press conference ahead of the 2018 Winter Olympics on February 7, 2018 in PyeongChang. Nikon D5 | AF-S Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8G ED | ISO 200 | 1/5000s | F3.2 Copyright: Joel Marklund / BILDBYRÅN
The tower of the Alpensia Ski Jumping Center is seen through Olympic Rings ahead of the 2018 Winter Olympics on February 4, 2018 in Pyeongchang. Nikon D5 | AF-S Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8G ED | ISO 400 | 1/1000s | F5.6 Copyright: Joel Marklund / BILDBYRÅN