You’ll see a famous photograph, or read about a well known photographer and you’ll be interested to find out more. Wouldn’t it be great to know how they are inspired? Or how they think about taking photographs? What’s their motivation?
Well I think if you read their photography quotes then that’s a great way to get a little insight into how they work and think.
Whether they strike a cord with you, stir an emotion or just make you think. It is interesting to hear how another person can explain or describe what photography is, or what it means to them.
I couldn’t pick a favourite. In fact these are probably my 20 favourite photography quotes (to date)!
1. ‘I didn’t choose photography. Photography chose me.’ – Gerardo Suter
2. ‘Every other artist begins with a blank canvas, a piece of paper… the photographer begins with the finished product.’ — Edward Steichen
3. ‘Sometimes I do get to places just when God’s ready to have somebody click the shutter.’ — Ansel Adams
4. ‘If your pictures aren’t good enough, you’re not close enough.’ –Robert Capa
5. ‘You don’t take a photograph you make it’ – Ansel Adams
6. ‘Your first 10,000 photographs are your worst’ – Henri Cartier -Bresson
7. ‘Which of my photographs is my favourite? The one I’m going to take tomorrow’ – Imogen Cunningham
8. ‘I find the single most valuable tool in my darkroom is my trash can’ – John Sexton
9. ‘If I could tell you the story in words, I wouldn’t need to lug around a camera’ – Lewis Hine
10. ‘If you are out there shooting, things will happen for you. If you’re not out there. you’ll only hear about it’ – Jay Maisel
11. ‘Photography helps people to see’ – Berenice Abbott
12. ‘A good snapshot stops a moment from running away’ – Eudora Welty
13. ‘Contrast is what makes photography interesting’ – Conrad Hall
14. ‘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
15. ‘If I have any ‘message’ worth giving to a beginner it is that there are no short cuts in photography.’ – Edward Weston
16. ‘I have discovered photography. Now I can kill myself. I have nothing else to learn’ – Pablo Picasso
17. ‘There are no rules for good photographs, there are only good photographs’ – Ansel Adams
18. ‘Seeing is not enough; you have to feel what you photograph’ – Andre Kertesz
19. ‘To me, photography is an art of observation. It’s about finding something interesting in an ordinary place… I’ve found it has little to do with the things you see and everything to do with the way you see them.’ – Elliott Erwitt
20. ‘If I knew how to take a good photograph, I’d do it every time.’ – Robert Doisneau
Having put all of these quotes together, it hits me how individual they all are. But at the same time there’re similar themes running through them all. Which is great! I get that they all see photography as an art form. You can tell that they get a lot out of photography. And that they are all working at getting better at it.
I really like seeing their points of view, even if they’re just snap shots. I’ve got to say I find them really inspiring…
What about you? Do you have any more?
What are your favourite photography quotes…. I’d love to hear them. Feel free to add them in the comments below!