Top 7 things I’ve learned as a Getty Images news photographer

February 7, 2012 | By Peter Macdiarmid | News, Photography, Photojournalism

I have just completed my seventh year as senior news photographer for Getty Images in the UK — And, as the video below will show you — what a year!

I started at Getty Images in January 2005, which also was a year full of interesting and exciting assignments:  The funeral of one Pope and the election of another, the general election in the UK (Tony Blair’s third as Prime Minister), the wedding of Prince Charles and Camilla Parker-Bowles, the London bombings,  David Cameron becoming leader of the Conservative Party and the Buncefield oil depot exploding in Hertfordshire.



A hooded youth walks past a burning vehicle in Hackney on August 8, 2011 in London, England. Pockets of rioting and looting continues to take place in various boroughs of London this evening, as well as in Birmingham, prompted by the initial rioting in Tottenham and then in Brixton on Sunday night. It has been announced that the Prime Minister David Cameron and his family are due to return home from their summer holiday in Tuscany, Italy to respond to the rioting. Disturbances broke out late on Saturday night in Tottenham and the surrounding area after the killing of Mark Duggan, 29 and a father-of-four, by armed police in an attempted arrest on August 4. (Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images/120692738)

Here are seven things that I have learned in my seven years as a Getty Images photographer:

  1. The visual tics of three different Prime Ministers and two US Presidents;
  2. What tear gas smells like;
  3. Where to park in London in a hurry;
  4. That shooting with four cameras at once is just enough to capture that Royal Wedding kiss on the balcony of Buckingham Palace;
  5. That you defiantely need a layer of thermal underclothes when spending the day in Downing Street in January;
  6. That you can never have too many spare batteries, flash guns and socks;
  7. And, finally, that as a photographer, you are only as good as your last front page

I am looking forward to 2012 – which promises to be just as exciting as the past seven years.

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  • Roger Tooth

    Thanks for all those great pictures, Peter!

  • Andrew Krucko

    Re: Point Seven: I think you’ll find that one applies in all professional photography practices.

  • bhisham

    seems you are sentimental