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|| News Item: Posted 2008-09-04

Olympic Moments: Lucy Nicholson
'I began at 8am, and finished at 3am with a remote camera shot I thought was a failure.'

By Lucy Nicholson, Reuters

Photo by Lucy Nicholson / Reuters

Photo by Lucy Nicholson / Reuters
I shot the opening ceremony from the roof of the Bird’s Nest stadium and it was the most grueling day of the Olympics for me.

I began at 8am, and finished at 3am with a remote camera shot I thought was a failure.

I climbed through the catwalk catacombs wearing a fireproof suit, climbing harness and helmet over my clothes. I was carrying 3 camera bodies, 5 lenses, a bag of magic arms and 50-meters of zip cord. It was over 90 degrees Fahrenheit and humid. A security guard confiscated my water bottle.

Surprisingly, the Chinese police allowed me to clamp a remote camera to a pole holding their video security camera a Canon Mark III, 70-200mm lens, 200 ISO, f8 on aperture priority, minus one stop exposure compensation.

I framed the shot, anticipating the location of the huge vertical Olympic cauldron, which was to be lowered into place at the last moment. Details were a secret, but I imagined the torchbearer would touch it to light it.

The torchbearer arrived and used a long fuse to light the cauldron, from way outside my remote camera frame.

I knew the shot wasn't the one I wanted, but pressed the remote switch anyway, as we huddled beneath a trap door with fireworks exploding around us. One of the photos ended up on the cover of Time Asia – a lucky accident!

Related Links:
Lucy's member page

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