Most people with one word names are rock stars - Bono, Madonna, Cher.
Meet Platon. He's not a rock star in the traditional sense, but he is a star photographer. His specialty is capturing the essence of world leaders in a single frame.
At the UN General Assembly in 2009, Platon photographed Moammar Gadhafi. Here's what Platon had to say about that strange experience. You can watch my interview with Platon on Sunday, September 4 at 10am ET/PT.
Gadhafi chose, arguably, the worst moment to sit for me....Obama was making his first address to the General Assembly as president of the USA. So he was still regarded, at this point, as some kind of political messiah.
I was just a few feet away from the podium where Obama was actually speaking. And I was surrounded back stage with all Obama's security guys, the White House Secret Service sniffer dogs, the medic teams. Hillary was there. Rahm Emanuel, Axelrod.
And it's a very confined space. And at the end of the corridor, I saw this giant crowd swell of about 200 people coming toward us. The White House guards started panicking –talking into their sleeves. A sense of real tension was emerging.
In the middle of the crowd swirl was Gadhafi. And he was marching in slow motion with this defiant spirit. He was surrounded by female bodyguards dressed head to foot in green military clothing. I mean it was a scene from a James Bond movie. It was his Amazonian Guard.
So he walked right up to me and sat for me, as if saying, I will sit for a portrait on American soil right under the nose of the American administration while Obama is actually making a speech.
And that's when I photographed him in his regalia.
He wore this sort of porkpie hat that tamed his wild hair. He had these incredible chocolate robes.
People say to me, "Is he crazy? Is he mad?"
He may well be those things. But he also may well be the smartest person in the room. And - and I don't think he's to be underestimated.
And I remember...experiencing a very chilling moment where I heard news that a colleague of mine and someone I knew called Tim Hetherington, the photojournalist and great filmmaker, had been killed in Libya covering the carnage that Gadhafi had essentially created.
And I remember when I got the news in my studio. I was printing a picture of Gadhafi, life size, to improve the skin tones. And it was so chilling to hear this news that this great
colleague of mine had tragically passed away.
And then here was Gadhafi still here, defiantly staring at me in the face in my studio. It was a very chilling moment and a reminder that I get to spend these intimate moments with people who are responsible for so many people's lives.