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back alley's In The Bag Joe's quest for the ultimate Camera Bag! So many bags .. so little time ...

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favourite photo quotes
Old 06-27-2009   #1
back alley
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favourite photo quotes

The photograph is married to the eye,
Grafts on its bride one-sided skins of truth;

dylan thomas
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Old 06-27-2009   #2
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From memory, and therefore only approximate, from George Bernard Shaw (a keen photographer) writing in Camera Work:

The camera is like the codfish, which lays a million eggs in order that one may survive.

Tashi delek,

R.
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Old 06-27-2009   #3
rpsawin
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"F8 and be there." Not sure who to credit for this.
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Old 06-27-2009   #4
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I think that Arther Felig, "WeeGee" said that.
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Old 06-27-2009   #5
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Albeit about filmmaking:
"I love that young people want to hold on to film as long as they can. It’s been with us for the hundred years of cinema, but it’s really over now. The new digital medium can be beautiful, but it’s really the lens and photographer that make the image beautiful."

Francis Ford Coppola, in L.a. Weekly June 5, 2009
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Old 06-27-2009   #6
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"Art is what you can get away with" - Andy Warhol
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Old 06-27-2009   #7
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"I'm done!"

FrankS.

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Old 06-27-2009   #8
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The Winogrand's "I photograph to see what something looks like photographed"....
and Erwitt's "...not what you, but how you see them..." (or something like that).
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Old 06-27-2009   #9
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"I'm done!"

FrankS.

oh damn, i fell off my chair!
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Old 07-25-2013   #10
doolittle
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I love good quotations. Can we revive this thread and make it a sticky (or point me to another thread if it's already been done)?

Here is one I like:

"If I knew how to take a good photograph, I'd do it every time." - Robert Doisneau
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Old 07-25-2013   #11
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"We photographers deal with things that are continually vanishing, and when they have vanished, there is no contrivance on earth which can make them come back again. We cannot develop and print a memory."
- Henri Cartier-Bresson, The Decisive Moment, 1952
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Old 07-25-2013   #12
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I love the caption which is in my RFF Signature:


'The question is not what you look at, but what you see' - Thoreau

cheers,

Frans
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Old 07-25-2013   #13
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"All photographs are accurate. None of them is the truth." Richard Avedon

"Because we see reality in different ways, we must understand that we are looking at different truths rather than the truth and that, therefore, all photographs lie in one way or another."- John Szarkowski

"All photographs lie, therefore all photographers are liars." - Monte H. Gerlach
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Old 07-25-2013   #14
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“It’s not YOUR picture, it’s MY picture!” - Garry Winogrand to a guy who told him not to take his picture.
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Old 07-25-2013   #15
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“There’s a lot of talk how making photographs has become so much harder given the state of things, given there are cameras everywhere. But then, if you are complaining about that – doesn’t that show the limitations of your own creativity? What can you photograph when every picture has already been taken? Well – isn’t it liberating to know that every photograph has been taken already, so now you can really take your photographs?”

- Joerg Colberg
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Old 07-25-2013   #16
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"If your pictures aren't good enough, you're not close enough." - Robert Capa
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Old 07-25-2013   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kbg32 View Post
“It’s not YOUR picture, it’s MY picture!” - Garry Winogrand to a guy who told him not to take his picture.
haha made me laugh
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Old 07-25-2013   #18
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Garry Winogrand was my favorite quote machine...

http://photography.about.com/od/famo...yWinogrand.htm
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Old 07-25-2013   #19
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My favorite Winoquote is (from memory): "there are no pictures when I reload my camera." In response to a question whether he was worried that he would miss a great shot while he was loading another roll.

I took this to really emphasize the role of the photographer's eye as if even the most amazing scene would not matter and have photographic value unless you brought your game to it.
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Old 07-25-2013   #20
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Gueorgui Pinkhassov about shooting without looking (from the Magnum Photos blog):

"Good photos have come when I least controlled the situation. The process reminds me more of fishing than it does of shooting. I look through the lens; I create my composition – banal, boring. Get tired, get distracted – click and success. As though the photographic angels, upon whom it all depends, had begged, ‘Don’t look through the lens, let us work in peace.’ Sometimes I have not even recognized my own photographs. I have even hesitated to call them my own."

And here's one by Karlheinz Stockhausen, from Weltmusik (1973) (I know, he's not a photographer, but still! ):

"If one can only produce specific notes on a very limited instrument, that very limitation guarantees highly original music, unlike what can be produced with other instruments offering completely different possibilities. Universal electronic equipment, with which one can in theory do anything, is more likely to kill the spirit than to inspire it. An unwritten law has always proclaimed that it is precisely through limitation that mastery can be revealed. Any kind of restrictive channelling accelerates and intensifies the flow of a river."
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Old 07-25-2013   #21
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"Stare. It is the way to educate your eye, and more. Stare, pry, listen, eavesdrop. Die knowing something. You are not here long."

- Walker Evans
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Old 07-25-2013   #22
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“ Which of my photographs is my favorite? The one I’m going to take tomorrow. – Imogen Cunningham
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Old 07-25-2013   #23
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"Isn't it amazing how photography has advanced without improving."

- Charles Sheeler
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Old 07-25-2013   #24
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"With a camera like that [a Leica 35mm rangefinder] you don’t believe you’re in the masterpiece business. It’s enough to be able to peck at the world."

—Lee Friedlander
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Old 07-25-2013   #25
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"When subject matter is forced to fit into preconceived patterns, there can be no freshness of vision. Following rules of composition can only lead to a tedious repetition of pictorial cliches." - Edward Weston
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Old 07-25-2013   #26
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"At our best and most fortunate we make pictures because of what stands in front of the camera, to honor what is greater and more interesting than we are. We never accomplish this perfectly, though in return we are given something perfect - a sense of inclusion. Our subject thus redefines us and is part of the biography by which we want to be known."

(Robert Adams, "Two Landscapes", Why People Photograph)

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Old 07-25-2013   #27
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Consulting the rules of composition before taking a photograph is like consulting the laws of gravity before going for a walk. -Edward Weston
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Old 07-25-2013   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kbg32 View Post
“It’s not YOUR picture, it’s MY picture!” - Garry Winogrand to a guy who told him not to take his picture.
Gee -- what would Sontag think of this??
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Old 07-25-2013   #29
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Gee -- what would Sontag think of this??
Haha! I had already copied “To photograph people is to violate them, by seeing them as they never see themselves, by having knowledge of them that they can never have; it turns people into objects that can be symbolically possessed. Just as a camera is a sublimation of the gun, to photograph someone is a subliminal murder - a soft murder, appropriate to a sad, frightened time.”

Not because I like it particularly but because of the amusement it has given me recently.
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Old 07-25-2013   #30
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"There are no rules for good photographs, there are only good photographs." - Ansel Adams

"Photography is not a sport. It has no rules. Everything must be dared and tried!" - Bill Brandt

"There are no rules and regulations for perfect composition. If there were we would be able to put all the information into a computer and would come out with a masterpiece. We know that's impossible. You have to compose by the seat of your pants." - Arnold Newman

"And in not learning the rules, I was free. I always say, you're either defined by the medium or you redefine the medium in terms of your needs." - Duane Michals
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Old 07-25-2013   #31
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Gee -- what would Sontag think of this??
Maybe you should read the book and find out.
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Old 07-25-2013   #32
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Two of my favourite...

"The camera is an excuse to be someplace you otherwise don't belong. It gives [] both a point of connection and a point of separation.", Susan Meiselas

"Colour is merely symbolic; the real truth is in luminosity!"
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Old 07-25-2013   #33
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While neither of these quotes come from photographers, I think they both perfectly describe the art of street and documentary photography. I use both of these quotes on my website.

There are all these moments, moments just like this one. There are all these moments, and how everyone lives in these short, all-too-short moments. There all these moments and what's so interesting, what makes them so beautiful, is that none of them last....

Joe Meno, from the novel "Office Girl"



Everything can change at any given moment, suddenly and forever.

Paul Auster, from the novel "The Book of Illusions"
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Old 07-25-2013   #34
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“The camera is an instrument that teaches people how to see without a camera.”
― Dorothea Lange
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Old 07-25-2013   #35
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"If you go out to shoot trees and trees aren't happening but clouds are...then shoot clouds..." Dewitt Jones, Outdoor Photography Magazine
I love that quote...it's allowed me to see what's happening when it's happening...
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Old 07-25-2013   #36
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I’m always looking outside, trying to look inside.
Trying to tell something that’s true.
But maybe nothing is really true.
Except what’s out there.

- Robert Frank
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Old 07-25-2013   #37
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I forget who said this, but I noticed it in someone's signature:

"That's called grain. It's supposed to be there."
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Old 07-25-2013   #38
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Quote:
Originally Posted by doolittle View Post
Consulting the rules of composition before taking a photograph is like consulting the laws of gravity before going for a walk. -Edward Weston
We have a winner!
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Old 07-25-2013   #39
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Maybe you should read the book and find out.
No, thanks.
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Old 07-25-2013   #40
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Just posted this one on another thread, but still one of my favorites:

“Negatives are the notebooks, the jottings, the false starts, the whims, the poor drafts, and the good draft but never the completed version of the work. The completed version, a print, should be sufficient and fair return for a magazine’s investment, for it is the means of fulfilling the magazine’s purpose. The print and a proper one is the only completed photograph, whether it is specifically shaded for reproduction, or for a museum wall. Negatives are private, as is my bedroom.”

W. Eugene Smith
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