Must See: Platon’s Portraits of Power


20071231_107One of my favorite things from the photo-web-universe is the 2008 interview of portrait photographer Platon from World Press Photo where he describes the circumstances behind one of my favorite portraits of all time: the cover shot of Time Magazine’s Person of the Year Vladimir Putin. The photograph won first prize in portraiture at World Press that year, and the story behind it is amazing for russophiles and to gain huge appreciation for what Platon goes through to get his images. If you haven’t seen or heard it yet, you must go listen. (click on the 2008 tab)

Serbian President Boris Tadic, who Platon 'really connected with'. Platon/The New Yorker.

Serbian President Boris Tadic, who Platon 'really connected with'. Platon/The New Yorker.


Jump to today, when a few people alerted me to The New Yorker’s presentation of Platon’s Portraits of Power. Each image of a world leader, taken in a five-day period at the UN this September, is accompanied by audio of Platon talking about the photograph, the situation, the person sitting.
Intimidating entourage-leading Libyan 'Leader of the Revolution' Muammar Quaddafi. Platon/The New Yorker.

Intimidating entourage-leading Libyan 'Leader of the Revolution' Muammar Quaddafi. Platon/The New Yorker.


It’s rich, inspiring and above all enlightening. You gotta have a look.


  1. Thanks for the heads up.
    This is amazing

    [Reply]

  2. Yeah, at this year’s Eddie Adams Workshop Platon did the same, telling the story behind each shot in his slideshow. Later, when I was getting coffee at the portfolio reviews (I think Platon was getting tea) I got to speak with him for five minutes. A cool guy!

    [Reply]

  3. Anonymous says:

    what happened to boris’ tuft of black? photoshop?

    nice to know he still drinks tea.(you can take the boy out of the country, but you can’t take the country out of the boy :) )

    [Reply]

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