Samsul Said

Samsul Said

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Pahang State, Malaysia
“I learnt photography by trying to explore with my camera”


I cover many subjects including politics, disasters and daily news.

One Shot

. PUTRAJAYA, Malaysia. REUTERS/Samsul Said
A worker cleans a pool inside the Tuanku Mizan Zainal Abidin mosque in Putrajaya.
“I wasn’t planning to take this picture. I just walked in and there it was!”


Photography started out as a hobby for me. I got my first SLR camera when I was 15 years old and I would go out and shoot pictures of live music, mostly rock bands. Music was my other big hobby.

I learnt photography by trying to explore with my camera, and taking pictures of whatever I wanted to shoot. Later, I studied for a year at photography school and after that I got a job with a rock magazine.

My eyes were opened to what is possible with news photography when I first met Bazuki Muhammad, a former Reuters staff photographer, during a protest in Kuala Lumpur in 2007. I looked though his portfolio online and tried to learn more about photojournalism.

My first assignment was helping Bazuki to cover a by-election in Permatang Pauh. I took my pictures and sent them as fast as I could. The next day was a wonderful new world for me because TIME magazine used my photograph. That was how I became a news photographer. I am still very grateful to Bazuki, who was very kind to teach me about photojournalism.

I have lots of favourite images, including some of protests in Kuala Lumpur. I like them because it’s not easy taking photos at close range during clashes, especially with riot police there.

I enjoy taking pictures of all sorts of things – politics, daily life, disasters. But I like shooting protests most of all because it gives you a chance to really see the passion on people’s faces. I love capturing that expression.

Behind the Scenes

. Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Reuters photographer Samsul Said takes a picture of a protester, who lies on the ground to block a riot police vehicle during clashes in Kuala Lumpur.