“The purpose of art is washing the dust of daily life off our souls.”

“What is always there is your work. It is the extension of you – not your child, but you. When you are very young you believe that success can bring you friends, that it can keep you from being lonely, and that it can make you rich. Thus you believe that all problems will be solved and happiness guaranteed.

“So you do your work for these reasons and for any others that can be imagined. The reasons do not matter. Always, you put more of yourself into your work, until one day, you never know exactly which day, it happens – you are your work. The passions that motivate you may change, but it is your work in life that is the ultimate seduction.”

“I thank God for having given me poverty for part of my life. Wealth disgusts me.”

“That’s why painters live so long. While I work I leave my body outside the door.”

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

Diane Arbus:
“Photography was a license to go whenever I wanted and to do what I wanted to do.”

“Everybody has that thing where they need to look one way but they come out looking another way and that’s what people observe. You see someone on the street and essentially what you notice is the flaw. It’s just extraordinary that we should have been given these peculiarities. And, not content with what we were given, we create a whole other set. Our whole guise is like giving a sign to the world to think of us in a certain way, but there’s a point between what you want people to know about you and what you can’t help people knowing about you.”

“Taking pictures is like tiptoeing into the kitchen late at night and stealing Oreo cookies.”

“The camera…pries into secrets, wants everything exposed and developed. The camera wants to know. But if my hypothesis is correct, this knowledge is dialectically determined to be unsatisfying, so that there can be no end to the taking of pictures…”

“for all her shyness and gentleness, she had a deep sense of personal ambition, a feeling that there was something very special inside her that had to get out.”

“What people want is an image of themselves that is acceptable to themselves. The very process of posing requires a person to step out of himself as if he were an object. He is no longer a self but he is still trying to look like the self he imagines himself to be.”

“Taking a portrait is like seducing someone.”

“Now, ten years later, I’ve grown into the face Diane Arbus saw in me then.”

Dorothea Lange:
“Artists are controlled by the life force that beats in them, like the ocean beats in on the shore. They’re almost pursued; there’s something constantly acting upon them from the outside world that shapes their existence.”

Arnold Newman:
“Photography is 10% inspiration and 90% moving furniture.”

Jodi Cobb:
“Most of the women who have made it, have made it on their own, outside the system rather than in staff positions. ..My life is a work in progress, not a fait accompli.”

Yosuf Karsh:
“The heart and mind are the true lens of the camera.”

Pete Turner
“You should never stop taking pictures to please yourself. A lot of guys do stop, you know. Their day rate gets up there, and they can’t help thinking about how much it’s costing them if they just go off and shoot for themselves. That’s understandable, but it’s deadly.”

“The difficulty is that the art of photography and the business of photography get incredibly tangled up. A reputation in one gets you more and more deeply involved in the other, so that you have less and less time for what you really want to do. If you’re Pete Turner what you really want to do is take your own pictures your own way-treats himself to two personal expeditions a year ‘just to cleanout my head’.”

“The longer you work in the medium, the more difficult it is to live up to your own standards, because in a way, each time you pick up a camera it is the first time. You must approach each new project with freshness and naiveté. You need the enthusiasm of an amateur coupled with the skill and technique of a professional. In the final analysis, it is only the image that counts.”

Other Quotes:

“The artist sees things not as they are, but how he is.”

“The secret of everlasting surprise-curiosity, wonder. Maintaining a child’s mind in an adult world.”

“A photographer is only as good as his last photograph.”

“Don’t shoot until it gets you in the pit of your stomach.”

“You need a lot more than talent to separate you from the rest of the pack. Luck, kinetic drive, never taking no for an answer, patience. It’s all in your personality. Make haste slowly.”