Photographers' Blog

The world’s best commute?

London, United Kingdom

By Toby Melville

As a Reuters Photographer based in London, an average commute to my first assignment of the day – normally covering either a political or business story in the city centre – would take roughly an hour. That’s 60 minutes, to drive all of 8 miles.

These commutes take place in the morning rush hour, when I find myself bumper-to-bumper with thousands of other short-tempered drivers, cyclists, pedestrians, buses and taxis. And I do this journey while trying to get to my first job, usually in a state of tension and anxiety…

But for two weeks a year it is different. Completely different. Commuting is fantastic.  

We are in Wimbledon season and I am shooting tennis all day, every day for a fortnight at the height of the (surprisingly dry and sunny!) British summer. And actually, the journey to and from the tennis is just as good as the assignment.

Wimbledon, like the centre of London, is still 8 miles from my home. But now, heading out at 8 in the morning and back again at 9 at night I can take a route through beautiful countryside and along peaceful towpaths, tracks and trails.

18 hour days at the Olympics

By Dominic Ebenbichler

The alarm clock was set for 7.15am. After a short breakfast with my colleague Damir Sagolj I took the bus to Wimbledon, a journey of about 1.5 hours.

After arriving I met with our tennis specialist Stefan Wermuth who is covering the whole tennis tournament during the London Olympics. He showed me the venue and we figured out who was going to be covering which matches. I got to shoot Andy Murray, which also included capturing some pictures of Prince William and his wife Catherine, who were cheering for Murray throughout the game.

As the matches were spaced with only 15 minutes break inbetween, there was not even enough time to eat a sandwich. But who needs food during the Olympics?

Roger and out: Wimbledon 2012

By Toby Melville

After two weeks of rainy, cold and windy tennis, somehow kept on schedule courtesy of early starts, late finishes and a much used Centre Court roof, the traditional tournament highlight of the Men’s Singles Final took place on Sunday.

For the first time in 75 years a Briton would contest the match. The only obstacle in Scot Andy Murray’s path to glory was the huge boulder in the shape of sixteen grand slam winner and six time Wimbledon victor, Switzerland’s Roger Federer.

I was lucky enough to have my name pulled out of the hat for the East Pit photographer’s position at ground level, with Reuters colleague Dylan Martinez shooting the game from one end, near the coaches, and where players often react to provide strong images.

Wimbledon, William and a Mexican Wave

Rafael Nadal is hurt. A physio and a doctor have arrived on court to inspect his left foot. I scramble to position myself directly across the court from his chair to capture what could be a crucial moment in the match. It is towards the end of a tense first set. Temperatures have only cooled slightly from a sweltering 33 degrees C (91F).

In my haste to capture Nadal’s injury I had left my original position with just a 300mm lens and Canon Mark 4 body, knowing I had to be agile as I joined a crush of photographers.

As I shot a few frames, I noticed out of the corner of my non-shooting eye his opponent Juan Martin Del Potro complaining that Nadal is wasting time. Engrossed in this unfolding tennis story, I try to ignore the crowd who are restless and trying to get a Mexican Wave going.

from UK News:

Best of Britain: Living with history

Each of this week's Best of Britain photos touches on how events from the past continue to make their effects felt.  Whether it's people remembering the victims of the 7/7 London Bombings, tennis fans hoping for a Brit to once again win Wimbledon, or actors breaking a centuries-old Shakespearean taboo, each photo is a small example of living with history.

Also included are photos of anti-war protesters, an unprecedented treasure find, an art exhibit featuring the Queen and a wall-building competition, done the old fashioned way.

A flower is seen placed at the London Bombing Memorial, on the fifth anniversary of the attacks, in Hyde Park July 7, 2010. REUTERS/Suzanne Plunkett

Fans of tennis player Andy Murray eat strawberries and cream as they watch his Wimbledon semi-final match against Spain's Rafael Nadal on a television in a bar in Murray's hometown of Dunblane, Scotland July 2, 2010. REUTERS/David Moir

Actors Dominic Rowan (L) and Miranda Raison perform as Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn in Shakepeare's Henry VIII at the Globe theatre in London July 6, 2010. William Shakespeare's Globe theater has finally put a 400-year-old taboo to rest by staging the play which burned the original house down during the Bard's lifetime. The theater on the south bank of the River Thames in London, which burned to the ground during the staging of a play about Henry VIII in 1613 and was rebuilt in the late 1990s, has staged the first version of the play that has come to be called "Henry VIII" since that fateful day. REUTERS/Luke MacGregor

A British Museum worker holds recently-found Roman coins in London July 8, 2010. One of the largest hoards of Roman coins ever found in Britain has been unearthed in a field in Somerset by an amateur treasure hunter with a metal detector. The stash of some 52,000 mostly bronze coins dating from the third century AD was buried in a large, well-preserved pot close to the picturesque town of Frome. It has yet to be valued. REUTERS/Suzanne Plunkett

Sheep pass by entrants in the annual Friends of the Lake District Dry Stone Walling Competition, who were working on their section of wall, in Little Asby Common, July 3, 2010. The event is aimed at preserving the traditional craft of constructing the walls, made without mortar, that are a distinctive part of Britain's rural landscape. REUTERS/Suzanne Plunkett

An anti-war demonstrator, who had camped out in Parliament Square, is removed from the entrance to Downing Street by police officers during a protest in central London July 2, 2010. The Mayor of London won a court order this week to evict the demonstrators who are living in a makeshift campsite opposite the Houses of Parliament. REUTERS/Paul Hackett

A woman poses with Kim Dong Yoo's painting "Elizabeth II vs Diana" a giant oil of the Queen made up of scores of faces of Princess Diana, before the launch of the Korean Eye : Fantastic Ordinary exhibition at the Saatchi Gallery in Chelsea west London July 5, 2010. REUTERS/Luke MacGregor

Center Court – A 30 year wait

Gary Hershorn poses on center court at Wimbledon June 30, 2010.

Wednesday finally saw the culmination of a 30 year dream of mine to shoot a match on the famed center court at Wimbledon. After 30 years of being a photographer, 25 of those spent with Reuters covering every conceivable sports championship around the world, there were still two things I always wanted to photograph, but for one reason or another never had the opportunity to do so. One was shooting a match on center court and the other, covering a British Open golf championship at St. Andrews.

This year is not my first at Wimbledon, I have been here a number of times editing the great pictures our photographers take during the fortnight of tennis. There is no tennis tournament that produces the beautiful images that Wimbledon does. From the simple white clothes that the competitors must wear, to the light that seems to illuminate the court in a magical way, to the darkish backgrounds of spectators the perfect distance away from the player and to the history that has played out on the grass year after year, one can only describe the chance to be here as special.

Special in the same way it is to have a chance to photograph the Masters golf tournament at the Augusta National Golf Club. Wimbledon and the Masters are ageless events played out in a similar way with no commercialism and lots of green as backgrounds. They are both considered ultimate events to cover as a photographer. The Masters I have been fortunate enough to attend 20 times.

The match that time forgot

Nobody goes to Court 18 expecting to stay long.

Right on the edge of the All England Tennis Club, and very much in the shadow of Centre Court, number 18 is a no-go area for seeded players and fans at the Wimbledon Tennis Championships. Matches are usually as brief as they are inconsequential — and then everyone moves on.

So when someone suggested I drop in on Court 18 to check out a match between two largely unknown players – John Isner from the United States, and Nicolas Mahut of France – I can probably be forgiven for thinking I’d be in and out of there pretty quickly.

John Isner (FRONT) of the U.S. walks off the court after winning a game in his match against France's Nicolas Mahut during the fifth set at the 2010 Wimbledon tennis championships in London, June 23, 2010. REUTERS/Suzanne Plunkett

It looked as if it was almost finished when I arrived. The game had already been carried over from the previous day due to bad light and the players were now in the fifth set with the score at 20-20.

Let there be light

It’s after 9:00 pm on a Sunday night, Centre Court, Wimbledon.

I am up on platform B with about 15 other photographers. This position often produces the best celebration photos as players turn and face their family and coaches seated above us upon match point.  But match point is no guarantee tonight.

Despite the thrill of what is taking place before our eyes (later to be called the greatest Wimbledon final ever) we are all extremely fearful of the two scenarios we face. Firstly, and most likely, as darkness falls, will the match be suspended until Monday morning?  Or secondly, will this match actually finish on time, making our big match point photo an extremely difficult technical challenge due to insufficient light.

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Rafael Nadal returns the ball to Roger Federer in their finals match. Picture by Kevin Lamarque

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