While the current presidential election continues to be a contentious, spirit-draining mess, it’s a fine time to take a look back at the president we’re about to lose.
Veteran photojournalist Pete Souza has been the Official White House Photographer for the entirety of Obama’s two terms. It wasn’t his first time at this job, having served before as President Reagan’s resident lensman. Perhaps that experience, though, gave Souza a sharper eye for White House happenings to anticipate, because his work during this administration has been incredible.
Over the past eight years, Souza may have taken as many as 2 million photos of President Obama, catching him in just about every emotional state and context. These images, thousands of which appear on the White House Flickr account, present Obama in the most tense moments of determining world affairs, and in the most lighthearted respites of parenting and exercise.
An album of 16 photos went viral recently, with Denizen magazine proclaiming them to be Souza’s favorites. The photographer himself has since denied this claim. However, the team at Twisted Sifter recently went through each of Souza’s annual Year of Photos albums and chose a representative jackpot of the photographer’s best picks from over the years. Truly, it is a remarkable collection, filled with personality in action, candid moments of reflection, and also a sense of what it takes to do this impossible job.
Have a look at a selection of these images in the slides above.