By now, you may have heard about how, at this year’s Olympics, Reuters is using 11 robots to shoot photos at impossibly amazing angles. According to Wired, “what Reuters will do is a whole new ball game.” These robotic cameras, armed with Canon's newest body, the 1-DX, will allow photographers to station themselves at a computer and remotely operate its movement with a joystick. Two men, Fabrizio Bensch and Pawel Kopczynski, developed this groundbreaking system. After the photos are taken, they can then be streamed into Reuter’s remote editing system which can be sent off to clients just minutes later.
"We are essentially able to put cameras and photographers where they've never been before, capturing images in ways they've never been captured," Bensch said. "For example, I've installed a robotic camera unit on a truss, 30 meters high – in a position where no photographer has been in a previous Olympics."
One interesting feature in the 1-DX camera (along with the Mark III) is that there’s a new multiple-exposure system that rivals what one can do in Photoshop. Whereas older SLR camera just added multiple images together, these new cameras give the photographer much more control (which you can read about in detail here).
What this all means is that photographers at the Olympics can take up to 14 frames per second, creating incredible, high-speed multiple exposure shots, all in-camera, that show an athlete’s magnificent movements.
“To be honest, we just got these new cameras before coming to the Olympics, so there is still a learning curve to get a feel for what they are capable of doing,” writes photographer Mike Blake. “So far it's been a blast to push them into new territory, not only technically, but to be able to show our clients and the public what these athletes actually do.”
The Associated Press explained it this way, “The multiple images are captured at split-second intervals, buffered and then saved in one file. The camera is able to recalculate what needs to happen for the image to come out making visual sense.”
Below are some artistic-looking examples of these multiple exposures by Reuters photographers Mike Blake and Brian Snyder along with some other great ones we spotted across the web (either captured in camera or stitched together with the help of Photoshop).