Welcome to the world’s largest photo quotation resource. These are not tired old quotes scammed from online sources and passed around like stale donuts at a committee meeting. This photo quote collection is the uniquely flavored creation of a single intelligence, not a group effort or a corporate product.

You’ll find thousands of fresh quotes on photography, with more added constantly. They’re hand-selected to inform, confound, and provoke. Browse photo quotes by author, of course, but you can also engage with the quotations by subject. In fact, the photo quotes are available in three clusters of subjects—Themes, Oppositions, and On Photography.  Plunge in. Get smart. Be challenged. Cause trouble.  —Quoteman

Chris Burden
[Artist, b. 1946, Boston, Massachusetts, d. 2015, Los Angeles.]

 It’s about trying to frame something. And draw attention to it and say, “Here’s the beauty in this. I’m going to put a frame around it, and I think this is beautiful.” That’s what artists do. It’s really a pointing activity. 

Boris Mikhailov
[Photographer, b. 1938, Kharkov, Ukraine, lives in Kharkov and Berlin.]

 Photographic accident may be more interesting than a consciously constructed collage. 

Susan Sontag
[Writer, theorist, and critic, b. 1933, New York, d. 2004, New York.]

 A photograph is not only an image (as a painting is an image), an interpretation of the real; it is also a trace, something directly stenciled off the real, like a footprint or a death mask. 

Crazy Horse (Tasunka Witko)
[Leader of the Oglala Sioux, b. 1849, Lakota lands, d. 1877, Fort Robinson, Nebraska.]

 My friend, why should you wish to shorten my life by taking from me my shadow? (To photographer Dr. Valentine T. McGillycuddy.) 

Berenice Abbott
[Photographer, writer, teacher, b. 1898, Springfield, Ohio, d. 1991, Monson, Maine.]

 [Composition is] as closely tied up with the body of the picture as veins and muscles are articulated with the human body. 

William Burroughs
[Writer, b. 1914, St. Louis, Missouri, d. 1997, Lawrence, Kansas.]

 There is in fact something obscene and sinister about photography, a desire to imprison, to incorporate, a sexual intensity of pursuit. 

Donald McCullin
[Photographer, b. 1935, Finsbury Park, London, lives in Somerset, England.]

 You cannot walk on the water of hunger, misery, and death. You have to wade through to record them. 

Martha Rosler
[Artist, b. 1943, Brooklyn, New York, lives in New York.]

 Documentary is a little like horror movies, putting a face on fear and transforming threat into fantasy, into imagery. One can handle imagery by leaving it behind. (It is them, not us.)