Chief White House photographer Pete Souza is out with a list Thursday of his top 10 favorite "photo of the day" snaps of President Obama and the first family over the last year.
The list, posted on the White House blog, includes photos of Obama playing fetch with the family dog, Bo, and of the White House buried in snow after a blizzard in February. But Souza, who explains in his writeup of the images that these aren't necessarily the "best" photos of the year, says he's used his "extraordinary access" to show what Obama "spends most of his time doing: running the country."
Indeed, Souza's selection includes photos include Obama visiting the Arlington Cemetery grave of a Medal of Honor recipient and an intimate photo of the president and first lady touring the Florida Gulf after the devastating BP oil spill.
Official White House photo by Pete Souza
All of the photos are posted on the White House Flickr page. Obama's is the first administration to post official behind-the-scenes photos online for average Americans to see. This practice knocks down a wall between the public and the presidency, but it's also a way for the White House to control the president's image.
|[Photos: See more moments with the Obama girls]|
Over the past two years, the White House has tended to release its own photos on Flickr—like one of Obama swimming in the Gulf—as opposed to allowing media photographers to get their own shots of the president. Many news organizations have refused to distribute the White House photos, labeling them the equivalent of a press release. That includes the Associated Press, which refused to distribute a photo last year of Obama meeting with the Dalai Lama after the White House blocked media access to the event and released its own photo instead.
[Related: Bush family's life outside the White House]
NOTE: The White House is hosting a Q & A with the photographer Thursday October 28 at 7:00 p.m. EDT. Click here for details.
(Photo of the hands of President Obama and first lady Michelle Obama in Florida: Pete Souza/White House)
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