Reading The Pictures is dedicated to the analysis of news photos and media images.
February 10, 2009

Scaling Up

Souza Obama AF1.jpg

The first slideshow on the White House website — perhaps colored by early resistance from the GOP — seems to address the need to sketch a larger Obama.

In this lead photo, WH photographer Pete Souza uses scale to maximum advantage, offering Obama ascending alone into the behemoth Air Force One. Besides highlighting the enormous seal on the underbelly, an idyllic sunset is expansively captured across the body.

Several images in the show are dedicated to the President holding court in the plane sporting his C.I.C. flight jacket, as well as being lauded and in command of House Democrats. (Also notice image #10 uses the ceiling lights and the “halo” trope to literally connote a presidential aura.)

If Obama’s identity as “a regular guy” has the tendency to make him seem common, get used to images like this as compensation.

First Flights (WH slideshow)

(image: Pete Souza/White House. caption: On Thursday, February 5, 2009, President Obama took his first flights aboard Marine One and Air Force One)

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