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Year in photos through the White House lens

Pete Souza, the official White House photographer, released his "Year in Photographs, 2012" on Wednesday afternoon.
May 25, 2012 - "The President was welcoming service members and their families to a screening of 'Men in Black 3' in the White House Family Theater. The movie was being presented in 3D, so the President jokingly asked them to try on their 3D glasses...
May 25, 2012 - "The President was welcoming service members and their families to a screening of 'Men in Black 3' in the White House Family Theater. The...

Pete Souza, the official White House photographer, released his "Year in Photographs, 2012" on Wednesday afternoon.

The images include some that have been shared before--including April's "no use crying over split yogurt"-- and some that haven't, with President Obama shooting hoops with actor George Clooney and friends.

Souza's efforts aren't going unnoticed. Washington insiders are noticing the key role the photographer plays in controlling the image Obama presents to the public. From the prolific leader to the loving father, the comedian to the average Joe, President Obama can be every man, every day--depending on the angle of Souza's lens.

Below, a look at a few of our favorites from 2012:

Rep. Gabrielle Giffords and President Obama share a moment before the State of the Union address:

The first lady goes down to the wire with Jimmy Fallon:

"How cool is this?!" - President Obama

The first couple's Kiss Cam debut:

The photo that become the most-retweeted Tweet in Twitter's history:

President Obama's favorite picture of the year--caught in Spider-Man's web:

The president is not impressed:

"Our hearts are broken today." - President Obama