Reuters photographer Damir Sagolj won first prize in the World Press Photo Daily Life Singles category with his photograph of North Korea’s founder, Kim Il-sung on a wall in Pyongyang.
Below, he recounts taking the photograph.
“After days of excitement and lots of rare pictures in the provinces, I came back to Pyongyang without big plans for shooting in the capital. All I wanted were some moody general views of the city. This is probably the easiest big picture I shot for a long time – it was taken from the window of my hotel room in Pyongyang early morning, just before the sunrise. I knew that portrait was there and I insisted with our hosts to get a room on a very high floor facing that direction. So, all I had to do is to wake up early in the morning, make a coffee, light a cigarette and make sure I exposed well. The scene has this eerie look for maybe 5 to 10 minutes, then the revolutionary songs and propaganda speeches from loudspeakers wake the city up.”
Canon 5D Mark II, lens 70-200mm, f4, 1/60, ISO 800
Caption: A picture of North Korea’s founder Kim Il-sung decorates a building in the capital Pyongyang early October 5, 2011. REUTERS/Damir Sagolj
To see more of Damir’s photography from North Korea click here.