A different view of Johnson: Photographer’s PM insights

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You’ve just given your first speech on the steps of Downing Street and entered that famous black door for the first time as prime minister, so what do you do next?

If you’re David Cameron or Theresa May you greet your new staff and then you sit down at your new desk in your new home and you take it all in. If you’re Mr Cameron you do it while holding your forehead in disbelief.

David Cameron moments after entering 10 Downing Street. Pic: Andrew Parsons
Image: David Cameron moments after entering 10 Downing Street. Pic: Andrew Parsons

But Boris Johnson, the newest incumbent of the greatest office of state, was clapped in by members of his team and then got straight to work rearranging his cabinet team “within milliseconds”, according to Andrew Parsons, the photographer who has been one step behind him for over a decade.

Speaking to Sky News, Mr Parsons told of those first few minutes in Downing Street and the seriousness which fell over the room as Mr Johnson started building his team.

Boris Johnson joking around for the camera. Pic: Andrew Parsons
Image: Boris Johnson joking around for the camera. Pic: Andrew Parsons

“The most interesting part of it is I get to see the side of Boris normal people don’t associate him with, the serious side”, he said.

The others, he added, had taken the time to understand what that moment had meant, but Mr Johnson went “straight into work mode”.

Boris Johnson is thrown into work. Pic: Andrew Parsons
Image: Boris Johnson is thrown into work. Pic: Andrew Parsons

It is just one of the many behind the scenes snippets Mr Parsons has revealed to Sky News after spending years taking pictures of all three prime ministers and other leaders over the last decade.

More from Politics

Explaining a famous imagine of Mr Johnson holding an AK-47 gun he said: “I was so lucky because the British soldier I was with said you can do that if you want to Sir… Then everyone started realising what we were doing!”

Mr Johnson poses with a gun. Pic: Andrew Parsons
Image: Mr Johnson poses with a gun. Pic: Andrew Parsons

Mr Parsons took photos of Mrs May too during her time in office, explaining that although she had a reputation for being incredibly straight “she would have a bit of a laugh and a giggle and stuff like that”.

Speaking about his own experience of working with Mrs May, Paul Harrison, her former press secretary, said she was “warm and compassionate” but also has a “fairly wicked sense of humour”.

He added that she took time to make sure her staff were “feeling better” on the day that she resigned from office – which meant many of them would also lose their jobs.

Theresa May having a laugh. Pic: Andrew Parsons
Image: Theresa May having a laugh. Pic: Andrew Parsons

Asked about now famous footage which showed Mrs May dancing during a trip to Africa, Mr Harrison added that it “took me by surprise” and that her decision to do the same at the party’s annual conference was also unexpected.

During her final weeks in office, he added, members of the public began sending flowers telling the prime minister to “keep going”, a gesture he said she was deeply touched by.

http://news.sky.com/story/behind-the-lens-top-political-photographer-on-capturing-johnson-may-and-cameron-11781646

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