#metoo Well done Sofia

Wir alle kennen den #metoo-Hashtag, ich dachte bisher, er sei nur außerhalb meines Freundeskreises, mit der Corona-Pandemie geriet er sogar ein wenig in Vergessenheit.

Gerade in dieser Zeit outet sich die griechische Olympiasiegerin Sofia Bekatorou über ihr eigenes Schicksal und geht mit einer Erfahrung an die Öffentlichkeit, die sie seit über 20 Jahren mit sich herumträgt.
Es gehört viel Mut dazu, in der Sportwelt gegen einen mächtigen Verband und olympische Funktionäre zu kämpfen.

Ich arbeite seit über 10 Jahren eng mit Sofia zusammen, sie kämpft wie eine Löwin, wenn sie etwas erreichen will, bleibt dabei aber immer sehr freundlich und einfühlsam.
Bescheidenheit ist eine iherer wichtigsten Tugenden, welche sie sehr gut beschreibt, die erste griechische Fahnenträgerin. Das habe ich selbst in Rio bei den Olympischen Sommerspielen 2016 mit erleben.

Der Kampf gegen die mächtigen Funktionäre des griechischen Olympischen Komitees ist noch nicht zu Ende, das ist erst der Anfang, aber Dank dem Mut der Sofia diskutiert nun die griechische Regierung in den kommenden Tagen über die Aufhebung der Verjährung von Sexualstraftaten. Das wird den Weg für viele weitere Fälle öffnen.

BBC Artikel

CNN Artikel

NY Times Artikel

Viel Glück und Bravo Sofia

Rio 2016 Olympic Games, Brazil Rio de Janeiro August 2016, Opening Ceremony Photo Juerg Kaufmann

English

We all know the #metoo hashtag, I used to think it only happened outside my circle of friends, with the Corona pandemic it even fell into oblivion a bit.

Just at this time, Greek Olympic champion Sofia Bekatorou is coming out of the closet about her own fate, going public with an experience she’s been carrying around for over 20 years.
It takes a lot of courage to fight in the sports world against a powerful federation and Olympic officials.

I have worked closely with Sofia for over 10 years, she fights like a lioness when she wants to achieve something, but always remains very friendly and caring.
Humility is one of the words that describe her very well, the first Greek flag bearer. I was able to experience this myself in Rio at the 2016 Summer Olympics.

The fight against the powerful officials of the Greek Olympic Committee is not over, this is just the beginning, but thanks to the courage of Sofia, the Greek government is discussing in the coming days to lift the statute of limitations for sexual offenses. This will open the way for many more cases.

Well done courageous Sofia

China Qindao Sailing Olympic Games 2008, Medalrace Yngling Photo Juerg Kaufmann
China Qindao Sailing Olympic Games 2008, Price giving Yngling Photo Juerg Kaufmann

A Moment with Shirley Robertson

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Shirley, in my view, is an exception. I always ask myself who that person is, what makes her different and capable of winning two Olympic Gold medals in a row?

I know there are plenty of athletes who have more than two gold medals, but in my view sailing is unique as the complexity of this sport is superior than in many other Olympic disciplines.

The world today is superficial. I see the tendency of running after the quick win, the low hanging fruits. Competing and winning two Olympic Gold medals requires the complete opposite, long term commitment, dedication, the energy to get up again and again after a defeat, isn’t that incredibly inspiring?

Will I be able to see and experience this during the shooting with here?

The portrait project with Shirley was not a short one. We have been talking about it since months; soon we realized we need many different photos, we need a series of images, each of them for a different purpose. It clearly would take a day to get this done.

It would be an intense day, and at the same time, I felt the weight on my shoulders: responsibility and a privilege. I cannot only spend a day working with her, ultimately what I see through my lens is what the people, who do not have the chance to meet here in person, will see of her.

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We all know the expression: A picture says more than a 1’000 words…So let’s get this x-thousand words right.

At the end of the project, we selected 20 different photos, each showing Shirley with here many facets, each with a different message.

It turned out to be an intense day, a potpourri of colors, ideas, a combination of clothes, expressions, lights, coffee breaks and much more. It’s tough to stay focused for so long in front of the camera, but she did it, and how she did, was terrific.

Not only is she a good sailor, but no wonder why she works at CNN, BBC and much more. One set after the other, she always came back on the set with outstanding positive energy, motivation, and commitment.

Even more, we could guide each other, she trusted me, and then we executed those ideas one by one, until the end of a long and intense day.

Is that one of the secrets and reasons why she can win two gold medals in a row? Did I had the chance to experience what makes the difference of losing or winning? Probably yes!

I have not experienced this with many people such a persistent focus and commitment over a long time in front of the camera.

Thank you, Shirley, it was more than a moment, it was a precious time with you and your partner Tim.

Look at the photos with this link.

A few days after the shooting I got an email from Shirley:

I know I have said it ten times already – but I’m chuffed with the images, they show oodles of personality.”

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