Obama photographer Pete Souza publishes book of iconic photos

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Wednesday, November 15, 2017
Obama photographer Pete Souza publishes book of iconic photos
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"Obama: An Intimate Portrait" is a collection of iconic photos by Pete Souza, a former White House photographer.

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Photos of the most iconic moments of the Barack Obama presidency are available in a new book by Obama's chief official photographer, Pete Souza, a former Chicago Tribune photographer.

Souza's images in "Obama: An Intimate Portrait," provide an intimate portrait of the 44th president over eight years. The book, which has more than 300 pages, is now on sale. Souza was in Chicago on Wednesday to promote his book.

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Official White House Photo by Pete Souza

From the high points, such as the passage of the Affordable Care Act, to the low points, when 20 first-grade students were shot in their school, Souza was on duty 24-hours a day.

Silent and observing, he took nearly 2 million pictures without a flash. When Osama bin Laden was killed, he was squeezed into a corner taking photos.

"People are going to interpret them in different ways depending on what you already think of him and what your background is," Souza said.

The book attempts to bridge the divide between being a beautiful souvenir and a take on a man who was, according to Souza, pretty much who you thought he was.

"When you are documenting for history, you are trying to capture authenticity and the mood and the emotion of what's taking place," Souza said.

Pete Souza, a former White House photographer, took many of the most iconic photos of Barack Obama's presidency.

Souza's favorite shot? When President Obama bent over to let a 4-year-old boy touch his head.

The biggest challenge was capturing Obama consoling the grief stricken.

"He would often meet with the families when the emotions were raw," Souza said. "I was always keeping an eye on how people were reacting to me being there."