Pete Souza, a former official photographer at The White House, captures President Obama (above) reacting to being webbed by a young Spider-Man.
It’s a great photo, I remember it first being published a few years ago. To me it portrays Obama as a playful, in-touch, not too serious world leader, man and father. The young boy dressed in his Spider-Man costume, saving the country from the big baddie. Totally unaware, or totally not caring, that he’s playing super-heroes and villains with the President of the USA. Politics aside, it’s not so easy to imagine the current incumbent acting out something similar is it?
I don’t know what made me think of the above photo earlier this week, however it’s sparked a little idea. I’m going to publish a series of articles about official photographers from, I hope, all sorts of backgrounds. Politics might be one, sport will certainly be another but I’ll try and come up with other, less obvious subjects too.
Official photographers at the White House
Pete Souza (website) is one of the longer-serving and better known White House official photographers, perhaps because he had better access to photograph Obama. He’s not only photographed Barack Obama, he’s also snapped Ronald Reagan back in the 80s. He’s the only photographer to hold the position twice.
Here’s the list:
1961–63 Cecil W. Stoughton / John F. Kennedy
1963–69 Yoichi Okamoto / Lyndon B. Johnson
1969–73 Oliver F. Atkins / Richard Nixon
1974–77 David Hume Kennerly / Gerald Ford
1981–83 Michael Evans / Ronald Reagan
1983–89 Pete Souza / Ronald Reagan
1989–93 David Valdez / George H. W. Bush
1993–98 Bob McNeely / Bill Clinton
1998–2001 Sharon Farmer / Bill Clinton
2001–09 Eric Draper / George W. Bush
2009–17 Pete Souza / Barack Obama
2017–?? Shealah Craighead / Donald Trump
Apparently President Jimmy Carter was turned down by Stanley Tretick and as nobody else was appointed, there’s a gap in the timeline between ’77 and ’81. I’m currently trying to find out if the UK government has an official photographer. I’m struggling to find out! David (Cameron) did have one -Andrew Parsons – but I’m not sure if there is currently one? Also, I don’t know if Andrew Parsons took this much lampooned photo on twitter (story):
Fancy being featured?
A long shot, but if you’re the official photographer of something important/interesting/unusual/dangerous/etc and would like to be featured, please do get in touch.