Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Photography Quotes

Since December, 2012, we've been sharing quotes about photography, art and inspiration with our followers in the hopes that they find something in what we've found, whether is be motivation to create work or just a bit of humor. It's been a lot of fun hunting down these quotes, and we've decided to compile a list our favorite 100 quotes for you. Not all of these quotes correlate directly with photography, but they all say something about making art, and while most of them come from some of the most famous photographers of all time, some come from painters, writers and, of course, we've included a whole lot of Susan Sontag.


“I love photographing. It’s that simple.” 
 Stuart Franklin

“The photograph itself doesn’t interest me. I want only to capture a minute part of reality.”  Henri Cartier-Bresson

“There is only you and your camera. The limitations in your photography are in yourself, for what we see is what we are.”  Ernst Haas

“Photography takes an instant out of time, altering life by holding it still.”  Dorothea Lange

“Photography is a love affair with life.”
 Burk Uzzle

“In photography there are no shadows that cannot be illuminated.”  August Sander

“Photographing a culture in the here and now often means photographing the intersection of the present with the past.”  David DuChemin

“Photography helps people to see.”
 Berenice Abbott

"Only photograph what you love.”  Tim Walker

"Photography is a small voice, at best, but sometimes one photograph, or a group of them, can lure our sense of awareness.”  W Eugene Smith

“Wherever there is light, one can photograph.”  Alfred Stieglitz

“For me, the subject of the picture is always more important than the picture.” 
 Diane Arbus

“It is more important to click with people than to click the shutter.”  Alfred Eisenstaedt

“Art is not what you see, but, what you make others see”  Edgar Degas

“Photographs, which cannot themselves explain anything, are inexhaustible invitations to deduction, speculation, and fantasy”  Susan Sontag

"Beauty can be seen in all things, seeing and composing the beauty is what separates the snapshot from the photograph."  Matt Hardy

"It is one thing to photograph people. It is another to make others care about them by revealing the core of their humanness."  Paul Strand

"A true photograph need not be explained, nor can it be contained in words."  Ansel Adams

"I never question what to do, it tells me what to do. The photographs make themselves with my help."  Ruth Bernhard

"My portraits are more about me than they are about the people I photograph." 
 Richard Avedon

"No photographer is as good as the simplest camera."  Edward Steichen

"I'd very much like to create my own style as a photographer, even if it's just for myself." 
 Graeme Le Saux

"Digital art software has empowered both the painterly side of photographers, and the photographer side of painters."  Buffy Sainte-Marie

"I'm a documentary photographer. That's what I've always wanted to be; that's where my heart and soul is."  Mary Ellen Mark

"No place is boring, if you've had a good night's sleep and have a pocket full of unexposed film."  Robert Adams

“At first glance a photograph can inform us. At second glance it can reach us.” ― Minor White

"It is the photographer, not the camera, that is the instrument." 
 Eve Arnold

"Within every man and woman a secret is hidden, and as a photographer it is my task to reveal it if I can."  Yousuf Karsh

"I hope to stay unemployed as a war photographer till the end of my life."  Robert Capa

"The more pictures you see, the better you are as a photographer." 
 Robert Mapplethorpe

"I am an artist first and a photographer second."  Andres Serrano

"My job as a portrait photographer is to seduce, amuse and entertain."  Helmut Newton

"In America, the photographer is not simply the person who records the past, but the one who invents it."  Susan Sontag

"The subject matter is so much more important than the photographer." 
 Gordon Parks

"A mad, keen photographer needs to get out into the world and work and make mistakes."  Sam Abell

"Every other artist begins with a blank canvas, a piece of paper the photographer begins with the finished product."  Edward Steichen

"Who sees the human face correctly: the photographer, the mirror, or the painter?"  Pablo Picasso

"The rarest thing in the world is a woman who is pleased with photograph of herself."  Elizabeth Metcalf

"Everyone has a photographic memory. Some don't have film." 
 Stephen Wright

"People say photographs don't lie, mine do."  David LaChapelle

“I think good dreaming is what leads to good photographs.”  Wayne Miller

“My life is shaped by the urgent need to wander and observe, and my camera is my passport.”  Steve McCurry

“If your pictures aren’t good enough, you’re not close enough.” 
 Robert Capa

"A photographer is an acrobat treading the high wire of chance, trying to capture shooting stars."  Guy Le Querrec

“I am not an artist. I am an image maker.”  Thomas Hoepker

“The photographer is filled with doubt. Nothing will soothe him.”  Raymond Depardon

“It’s not how a photographer looks at the world that is important. It's their intimate relationship with it.”  Antoine D’Agata

"No matter how slow the film, Spirit always stands still long enough for the photographer It has chosen." 
 Minor White

“Still images can be moving and moving images can be still.” ― Chien-Chi Chang

“I have the great privilege of being both witness and storyteller. Intimacy, trust and intuition guide my work.”  Jim Goldberg

“It’s one thing to make a picture of what a person looks like, it’s another thing to make a portrait of who they are.” 
 Paul Caponigro

“Taking pictures is like fishing or writing. It’s getting out of the unknown that which resists and refuses to come to light”  Jean Gaumy

“The eye should learn to listen before it looks.” 
 Robert Frank

“Ultimately photography is about who you are. It’s the truth in relation to yourself. And seeking truth becomes a habit.”  Leonard Freed

“All the technique in the world doesn’t compensate for the inability to notice.”  Elliott Erwitt

“The Pictures are there, and you just take them”  Robert Capa

“The true mystery of the world is the visible, not the invisible”  Oscar Wilde

“This war is like an actress who is getting old. It is less and less photogenic and more and more dangerous.”  Robert Capa

“Don’t shoot what it looks like. Shoot what it feels like.” 
 David Alan Harvey

“ draw someone's portrait is to steal their soul, I am taking photographs, does it mean that I am just borrowing them?” T.A.

“Bad decisions create a good lessons, photos however create a good stories.” Solita

“Photography is an itch that won’t go away. No matter how much you scratch it.” Dara

 “The picture that you took with your camera is the imagination you want to create with reality.” Scott Lorenzo

“Life is not about significant details, illuminated a flash, fixed forever. Photographs are.” 
Susan Sontag

“I tend to think of the act of photographing as an adventure. My favorite thing is to go where I’ve never been.”  Diane Arbus

“A thing that you see in my pictures is that I was not afraid to fall in love with these people.” Annie Leibovitz

“It is no accident that the photographer becomes a photographer any more than the lion tamer becomes a lion tamer.” 
Dorothea Lange

“A photograph is a click away. A good photograph is a thousands clicks away and a better one, a million clicks away” Kowtham Kumar K

“The context in which a photograph is seen affects the meaning the viewer draws from it.” Stephen Shore

“Unpredictability. Accidents. Not good when you’re engaging in, say, brain surgery, but when lighting...wonderful!” Joe McNally

“The brightest light makes the blackest mark.” 
Henry Holmes Smith

“I don't trust words. I trust pictures.” Gilles Peress

“The whole point of taking pictures is so that you don’t have to explain things with words.” Elliott Erwitt

 “I am a professional photographer by trade and an amateur photographer by vocation.” 
Elliot Erwitt

 “The painter constructs, the photographer discloses.” Susan Sontag

"The camera is much more than a recording apparatus, it is a medium via which messages reach us from another world."  Orson Welles

“I would never understand photography, the sneaky, murderous taxidermy of it. ” Lorrie Moore

“It is through living that we discover ourselves, at the same time as we discover the world around us.” Henri Cartier-Bresson

“Above all, life for a photographer cannot be a matter of indifference” 
Robert Frank

"...There is no such thing as inaccuracy in a photograph. All photographs are accurate. None of them is the truth. ” Richard Avedon

“A photographer is like a cod, which produces a million eggs in order that one may reach maturity.” George Bernard Shaw

“A photograph is a moral decision taken in one eighth of a second. ” Salman Rushdie

“The Earth is Art, The Photographer is only a Witness ” Yann Arthus-Bertrand

“Today everything exists to end in a photograph.” Susan Sontag

“A portrait is not made in the camera but on either side of it.” 
 Edward Steichen

“For me, the camera is a sketch book, an instrument of intuition and spontaneity.” Henri Cartier-Bresson

“Taking pictures is savoring life intensely, every hundredth of a second.” 
Marc Riboud

“A picture is a secret about a secret, the more it tells you the less you know.” Diane Arbus

“When words become unclear, I shall focus with photographs. When images become inadequate, I shall be content with silence.” Ansel Adams

“In photography there is a reality so subtle that it becomes more real than reality.” 
 Alfred Stieglitz

“It can be a trap of the photographer to think that his or her best pictures were the ones that were hardest to get."  Timothy Allen

“Nothing happens when you sit at home. I always make it a point to carry a camera with me at all times."  Elliott Erwitt

"The object is nothing, light is everything.”  Leonard Missone

“I think all art is about control, the encounter between control and uncontrollable.”  Richard Avedon

“Your first 10,000 photographs are your worst.” 
 Henri Cartier-Bresson

“If I could tell the story in words, I wouldn’t need to lug around a camera.”  Lewis Hine

“In photography, the smallest thing can be a great subject. The little, human detail can become a Leitmotiv”  Henri Cartier-Bresson

"I am not interested in shooting new things – I am interested to see things new.” 
 Ernst Haas

"One should really use the camera as though tomorrow you’d be stricken blind.”  Dorothea Lange

“Which of the photographs is my favorite? The one I’m going to take tomorrow.” 
 Imogen Cunningham