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

Robert Rauschenberg
[Artist, b. 1925, Port Arthur, Texas, d. 2008, Captiva Island, Florida.]

 I’m quite taken aback when I get something that appears to be technically a good photograph, because it’s not necessarily my intention. 

Martin Parr
[Photographer, b. 1952, Epson, Surrey, England, lives in Bristol and London, England.]

 Photography is the simplest thing in the world, but it is incredibly complicated to make it really work. 

Mary Ellen Mark
[Photographer, b. 1940, Elkins Park, Pennsylvania, d. 2015, New York.]

 I just think it’s important to be direct and honest with people about why you’re photographing them and what you’re doing. After all, you are taking some of their soul, and I think you have to be clear about that. 

Wright Morris
[Writer and photographer, b. 1910, Central City, Nebraska, d. 1998, Mill Valley, California.]

 However much [photographs] may lie, they do so with the raw materials of truth. 

Garry Winogrand
[Photographer, b. 1928, New York, d. 1984, Tijuana, Mexico.]

 I photograph to see what things look like photographed. 

Tacita Dean
[Artist, b. 1960, Canterbury, England, lives in Berlin.]

 I don’t know if we will have the same level of longing for a digital iPhone picture as we will for a gelatin-silver print. 

Siegfried Kracauer
[Media critic and sociologist, b. 1889, Frankfurt, Germany, d. 1966, New York.]

 The flood of photos sweeps away the dams of memory. Never before has a period known so little about itself. In the hands of the ruling society, the invention of illustrated magazines is one of the most powerful means of organizing a strike against understanding… The ‘image-idea’ drives away the idea. 

Lee Miller
[Photographer and model, b. 1907, Poughkeepsie, New York, d. 1976, Sussex, England.]

 No question that German civilians knew what went on. Railway into Dachau camp runs past villa, with trains of dead or semi-dead deportees. I usually don’t take pictures of horrors. But don’t think that every town and every area isn’t rich with them. I hope Vogue will feel it can publish these pictures. (Cable from German front, May, 1945)