Great shots of President Barack Obama (link)

Discussion in 'Street and Documentary' started by john g., Feb 22, 2010.

  1. For me, the link above didn't go anywhere, but here it is again (link ). It's "Year in Photos" by Pete Souza.
     
  2. Wow, is this guy good.
     
  3. Yes, very good work, of course the very subject does a lot in making the pictures "work" , but it most be one hell of a tough job to be as invisible as he seems to be as the photographer in such an environment, and yet come up with such talking images.
     
  4. C-span (US) just ran a round table feature with past white house photographers, displaying their work. I must say it was pretty disappointing. I'm glad to see this work.
    I wasn't happy with the choice of the Obama Administration for their Official White House photog, but I guess that there are many photographers who get a shot at it. This guy seems to be top notch.
     
  5. John
    thank you for that. I wish that more people posted things like this, this guy is great, a good White House photographer is probably like a good butler invisible but always there.
    Steve
     
  6. Just good solid magazine type work; nothing more or less....
     
  7. Top shelf..
     
  8. I really enjoyed this. The capacity to capture the multiple facets of a subject is shown well here -- seeing a normally quite formal subject in light, fun, and human ways is part of the reasons this collection works so well.
    And I gotta say, I LOVE shots of our President interacting with kids, his own and others, and his family. I wish we'd seen more of this with our other Presidents.
     
  9. Those pictures of Obama and admin are more remarkable for the access the photographer was given, then the quality of those compositions. There were plenty of good comps but I noticed critical focus sas often off; the focal plane was often way in front or behind the subjects.
    If most of us had that access, we'd make similar or better pictures too. It seems access was 90% of it all...to be fair, it could be the softer then expected comps were a a remnent of conversion to JPG and resizing.
    So really those pictures show remarkable access...the kind we'd all love to have. I also have a feeling that the subject matter is more remarkable then the photos ordinarily would be....like porno makes men think any picture of a naked lady is "great".
     
  10. Well, Dan it looks like there were a lot of low light shots and no flash, focus is a little soft in some, even in some outdoor shots in daylight. However, these photos capture great moments and the compositions are mostly very good. I think you over reach if you think most of us would make similar or better photos. But it would be fun to have the chance. He probably took jillions of photos to edit to these. I think it's very good for these documentary grab shots, not set pieces and the photos are technically strong enough (to me) to effectively depict some really great moments. They have a great use of light as well. I know that one photo of the pres with his feet up on the desk had some national exposure and was used as a political red herring by fox news as being "undignified" until several photos of former presidents including George Jr. and I forget who else were shown on other channels depicting presidents putting their feet up on the desk of the oval office. Controversy over.
     
  11. Access should be good when you are the official White House photographer! But respectfully; I don't see the images as any better than what you would see any competent newspaper or magazine pj produce given that access.
    With the sort of access he has he should have produces much stronger images. There was nothing spectacular about the images. Take away the fact that he is the President and "pretend" that it is an ordinary family and I don't think the images hold up so well.
    Don't get me wrong; there is nothing particularly bad about the images, they are just not strong enough to justify the access he receives.
    I would love to see what the NOOR agency photographers would have done given the same access. They seem to have a distinctive photographic style.
    http://www.noorimages.com
    Mind you; I suppose as official White House photographer he is employed to make Obama look good and not try anything too edgy or veer to far away from the clichés?
     
  12. Ross, to me your comparing apples to oranges. NOOR is a series of photojournalistic focusing on topical interest, much of it the hard hitting situations like war, poverty, environmental degradation, the other is a white house photographer, to me he's more akin to a really good wedding photographer. I think many of his images are compelling in their own right. I can see what you are saying though, he tends to the "pretty" shot. Even on his web site, his Afghanistan photos also tend more toward the pretty than the punchy. Maybe he should have gotten a few of Obama in the jacks or getting slapped around by Michelle, or spilling gravy on his fancy shirt... At the end of the day though, i think he's a pretty good photographer and i wouldn't mind having those skills.
     
  13. I don't really see anything too outstanding here either...Wonder if there's any definitive photo in this collection, one that will be remembered beyond this thread?
    They're compelling pictures in the same way any "celebrity" photos are compelling... Obama's definitely photogenic, but, really, as has been said, "If he wasn't the President..." who'd really care?
     
  14. Definitive...maybe, only time will tell. I am pretty sure photo.net is not the sum total universe of discussion of these photos, particularly since the photo with his feet on his desk has already been the subject of a political attack on Obama by Fox news.
     
  15. Access speaks volumes.
    I once had (access) to Al Unser Jr.
    Everyone commented how great the shots were...Really they were quite average; but I had access, all day access and up close...you're bound to get some great shots when you can tread where few others can.
     
  16. You never know, Barry... Photo.net could be the center of the photographic universe. I bet AP, UPI, New York Times, and even Fox News evaluates every post that goes up here...
    But, you're right, regarding a definitive photo; time will tell. As of today, I'd say the definitive rendering of Obama isn't a photograph exactly... I'm thinking of Shepard Fairy's painting of the AP photograph...
     
  17. You know Fi, that thought blows my mind, does that mean that we are at the center of the universe and that this discussion is at the core? In a post-modern world, this bears careful consideration :)
     
  18. Barry, as the last Bohemian once told me, "This is where I am, man... This is not where I am at..."
    Dig?
     
  19. Hmmm the "chink" in "Even Cowgirls get the Blues" told me that " I believe in everything, nothing is sacred and I believe in nothing, everything is sacred.
     
  20. Oh boy guys, don't hurt my head like this, I already have a headache.
     
  21. Barry; “to me he's more akin to a really good wedding photographer”
    Like I said earlier; I don’t think they are bad images, just not strong enough when you consider his access. And if you grant that access why not give it to someone who can make the most of it? Maybe they want a “safe” photographer to keep the PR machine rolling along? I don’t know.
    What I meant was that if you gave any of the NOOR photographers that kind of access I would bet pennies to pounds that they would come up with much stronger images.
    NOOR’s photographers not only shoot hard news and issues but other work too e.g Patti Smith, Motorhead. . I still feel that their work is some of the most innovative out there.
    Cheers! :)
     

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