Based on the New York Times #1 bestsellers, An Intimate Portrait and Shade, comes a documentary, The Way I See It, an unprecedented look behind the scenes of two of the most iconic Presidents in American History, Barack Obama and Ronald Reagan, as seen through the eyes of renowned photographer Pete Souza, from the White House and beyond. Pete Souza was the Chief Official White House Photographer for President Obama and an Official White House Photographer for President Reagan from 1983-1989. The Way I See It, won the Critics’ Choice Documentary Award for Best Score and the organization’s non-competitive Most Compelling Living Subjects of a Documentary award.
His book, Obama: An Intimate Portrait, was published in 2017 and debuted at #1 on the New York Times bestseller list and is one of the best-selling photography books of all time. Pete’s Instagram account, with more than two-an-a-half million followers, often draws attention by juxtaposing photographs of President Obama with comments about the current president’s actions. His 2018 book, Shade: A Tale of Two Presidents, is based on these postings; it also debuted at #1 on the New York Times bestseller list. The softcover edition adds 60 new pages where the hardcover ended, adding photos and commentary on hot button issues.
Pete has lectured many times on his photography including at the Smithsonian Museum of American History, Harvard University, Boston University, and has appeared on dozens of TV and radio news shows.
He has exhibited his photographs at many venues around the world and currently has two exhibits that are traveling around the country: “Obama: An Intimate Portrait” and “Two Presidents, One Photographer: Obama and Reagan.”
Souza is currently a freelance photographer based in Madison, Wisconsin, and is a Professor Emeritus at Ohio University’s School of Visual Communication.
Presidential Leadership & Legacy
Pete Souza is now delivering a rare and unique virtual program, “Presidential Leadership & Legacy.” He shares some of his favorite images of Reagan and Obama, providing candid moments that are windows into their humanity. What we see in Souza’s photographs are two presidents who clearly respected both the office they held and the people with whom they interacted, no matter the circumstance.
Eyewitness to History
As the Chief Official White House Photographer for both Barack Obama and Ronald Reagan, Pete was in a unique position to spend rare and intimate moments in the Oval Office observing two transformative Presidents of the United States. He shares some of his iconic behind-the-scenes photographs, along with his poignant detailed stories, all leading to a bold and dynamic depiction of true leadership.
Two Presidents, One Photographer
Two Presidents, One Photographer showcases fifty-six of Souza’s photographs of two presidents. It includes Souza’s favorite images of Reagan and Obama, providing us with candid moments that are windows into their humanity. What we see in Souza’s photographs are two presidents who clearly respected both the office they held and the people with whom they interacted, no matter the circumstance.
Obama: An Intimate Portrait
During Barack Obama’s two terms, Pete Souza was with the President during more crucial moments than anyone else–and he photographed them all. Souza captured nearly two million photographs of President Obama, in moments highly classified and disarmingly candid.
“What a WONDERFUL once and a lifetime opportunity! I can’t thank you enough for bringing him to speak & for your help to make sure I got a spot tonight! It has been many years since I’ve had the opportunity to hear someone speak, where I admire their body of work & them. For Mr. Souza to be so open honest made it even better. The images he shared and the insight from behind the scenes he had on was amazing!!!! Mr. Souza what a truly memorable experience tonight was for me. Thank you again for everything.”
—EVENT ATTENDEE, UW-Milwaukee
“Pete Souza was simply extraordinary. While we cannot safely gather in our performance halls and art galleries on campus at this time, we were able to bring Mr. Souza into our virtual School of Visual & Performing Arts’ Industry Insight Series. He created a wonderful, specialized presentation for our Community College audience made up of students, faculty, staff and patrons, providing important insight about his work. His generosity of spirit, thorough preparation, humility and welcoming attitude created a safe and effective space for our students to learn. In our continued search for inspiration during these challenging times, Mr. Souza’s presentation served to inspire our students and faculty, encouraging all of us – especially in education – to continue our work. I look forward to welcoming him to our Performing Arts Center when we are once again able to convene. It was a truly unforgettable evening and we are so grateful.”
—JENNIFER SMOLOS, Dean of the School of Visual & Performing Arts at College of the Canyons (Los Angeles, CA)
“Pete is humble, humorous, and is a great storyteller. He is a true national treasure.”
—ELIZABETH PAHL, Ohio University
“Pete was incredible. He held the room in the palm of his hand, making them laugh and cry with his powerful presentation. We have already received wonderful feedback from our guests — many of whom want to know when he is coming back.”
—MARY MCMURRAY, Truman Library Institute
A Tale of Two Presidents
**updated with 60 new pages and including the release of the Mueller report.
A Tale of Two Presidents
Obama – An Intimate Portrait
The Historic Presidency in Photographs
Behind-The-Scenes Photographs of President Ronald Reagan
Images of Greatness
An Intimate Look at the Presidency of Ronald Reagan
The Rise of Barack Obama