Top Photos with Mike Lewis: Days 1 and 2 of the 18th FINA World Championships

Top Photos with Mike Lewis: Days 1 and 2 of the 18th FINA World Championships

By Mike Lewis//USA Swimming Photographer  | Tuesday, July 23, 2019

GWANGJU, South Korea – USA Swimming photographer Mike Lewis shares his favorite photos from the first two days of competition at the 18th FINA World Championships.

Here’s what makes these photographs his favorites, in Mike’s own words:

The Ledecky Fan 

Katie Ledecky fan.

“This image shows the power Katie Ledecky has in inspiring people from around the world. Although the 400m free was not the race USA Swimming fans had hoped for, this woman shows us all that Ledecky’s accomplishments transcend any single swim. Although some may debate who’s the greatest woman swimmer of all time, Katie Ledecky’s greatness touches so many in very powerful ways. This woman sat transfixed throughout the entire race holding her sign in support of Katie during the prelims of the 1500m freestyle.”

Let It Drag  

Katie Ledecky in the 1500

“Slowing down the shutter speed of the camera to a 40th of second while panning is never an easy image to make, and it usually takes several attempts to make it work. I dig these images because they convey both power and movement. Today was one of those days when it worked. “

Encased in Ice


“When I was younger, I swam a lot of backstroke and people would sometimes say, “Backstroke is great because you can breath whenever you want,” which never made sense to me. There are so many times when you’re enveloped in water that you have to time your breathing just like the other three strokes. I like this image of Olivia Smoliga from the prelims, because it illustrates how much water moves around the face in backstroke. Beyond this, it captures a moment in time that gives almost gives a sense of being covered in ice.”

Making a Connection


“I left the deck to spend some of the morning shooting from the stands above the press tables. I knew the USA families were above me based upon some of the cheering I could hear. When Andrew Seliskar exited the pool following his 200 freestyle prelim swim, it was great to see him make a connection with his parents in the stands.”



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