Charles Platiau

Charles Platiau

Paris, France
Saint-Omer, France
“Forget yourself and concentrate on the story.”


I cover news, fashion, sport, features… There’s no subject that I don’t shoot.

One Shot

. Paris, France. REUTERS/Charles Platiau
Henri Cartier-Bresson, French photographer and co-founder of the Magnum photo agency takes pictures during a demonstration in support of democracy in China at the Sorbonne university in Paris.
“Getting this picture of Cartier Bresson was quite a scoop because there are only two or three pictures of him with his camera in existence. I shot the photo with a long lens and he didn’t see me, but maybe I appear on his negatives. It's incredible to think that I might have been photographed by Cartier Bresson…”


My earliest memories of photography are family albums.

I learnt photography on my own, I never went to photography courses, not at all. The only real photo school is to go out on the streets and just take pictures.

I started my career as a sports photographer for a photo agency and the French daily sports newspaper – ‘L’Equipe’. I was a good beginning because sports stories are the most difficult ones to cover. When you’re trained as a sports photographer you can shoot anything else.

I don’t remember my first assignment. It was 36 years ago, and there have been so many stories since then…

All stories are big for me, every story is important. I try to do my best on each one, whether it is something that reaches many publications or just a small story with beautiful images. At Reuters you have to be ready to cover anything.

When I take pictures, I am reporting for Reuters clients with my camera. My audience is newspapers and websites.

My biggest lesson as a photographer has been to forget yourself and concentrate on the story. Cover a story as a news photographer, and not as if you are pretending to be an artist. A good picture is a picture published, which meets our clients' needs.

My best assignment is always the next one.