Nan Goldin
[Photographer, b. 1953, Washington, D.C., lives in New York and Paris.]

 When you set up pictures you’re not at any risk. Reality involves chance and risk and diving for pearls. 

Margaret Bourke-White
[Photographer, b. 1904, New York, d. 1971, Darien, Connecticut.]

 Photography is a very subtle thing. You must let the camera take you by the hand, as it were, and lead you into your subject. 

Alec Soth
[Photographer, b. 1969, Minneapolis, Minnesota, lives in Saint Paul, Minnesota.]

 In a world where the 2 billionth photograph has been uploaded to Flickr, which looks like an Eggleston picture! How do you deal with making photographs with the tens of thousands of photographs being uploaded to Facebook every second, how do you manage that? How do you contribute to that? What’s the point? 

Gustave Flaubert
[Writer, b. 1821, Rouen, Seine-Maritime, France, d. 1880, Rouen, France.]

 PHOTOGRAPHY Will make painting obsolete. (See DAGUERREOTYPE.) (From “The Dictionary of Received Ideas,” assembled from notes Flaubert made in the 1870s.) 

Jeff Wall
[Photographer, b. 1946, Vancouver, Canada, lives in Vancouver.]

 Reportage, or the spontaneous, fleeting aspect of the photographic image, appear simultaneously with the pictorial, tableau-like aspect at the origins of photography; its traces can be seen in the blurred elements of Daguerre’s first scenes. Reportage evolves in the pursuit of the blurred parts of the pictures. 

Victor Burgin
[Artist and writer, b. 1941, Sheffield, England, lives in London.]

 At the end of the second year I’d have students come into my office and they’d say, “Don’t get me wrong, it’s not like I don’t like the theory classes. I find them really interesting, but I can’t take a picture any more. Every time I raise the camera to my eye I think, is this politically OK? Is this... etc., etc.” The advice I always gave them was: Shoot first, ask questions later. 

Paul Virilio
[Writer and theorist, b. 1932, Paris, lives in La Rochelle, France.]

 ... the blinding Hiroshima flash... literally photographed the shadow cast by beings and things, so that every surface immediately became war’s recording surface, its film. 

Kyoichi Sawada
[Photographer, b. 1936, Aomori City, Aomori Prefecture, Japan, d. 1970, Cambodia.]

 If you’re there, you get good photographs.