President Obama's "Year in Photos" Will Rebuild Your Faith in Democracy

President Obama's "Year in Photos" Will Rebuild Your Faith in Democracy

Pete Souza, the chief official White House photographer, doesn't have an easy job.

In an interview on Charlie Rose, Souza said that he "probably sees the president of the United States more than the first lady, his children or his chief of staff." It's not easy to slack off when the leader of the free world is your officemate — or when the White House press corps accuses you of "replacing independent journalism with visual press releases."

But despite the pressure behind the camera, Souza has managed to capture thousands of images of President Barack Obama, first lady Michelle Obama and guests of the White House in compelling photographs that manage to show the human side of being the most powerful person on earth.

"Each photograph, taken either by me or a photographer on my staff, is accompanied by my personal observations about the image," Souza said. "Most of the moments captured can best be described as behind the scenes — that is, photographs taken away from the spotlight of public events. Some of the photographs are historic because of what is taking place, but others hopefully give people a more personal sense of who the president and first lady are." 

Take a look:

Jan. 28, 2014

Feb. 18, 2014

March 4, 2014

March 7, 2014

March 23, 2014

April 14, 2014

April 21, 2014

April 28, 2014

May 16, 2014

May 24, 2014

June 6, 2014

July 10, 2014

Dec. 1, 2014

Whether Obama is attending to matters of state or cuddling with his dog, the photo series shows a human side of the presidency that's often kept hidden. It's a reminder that the person sitting behind the Resolute Desk isn't just a face on a television but a real person. If Souza's goal was to show the people behind the leaders, mission accomplished.