Mark Twain (Samuel Langhorne Clemens)
[Writer, b. 1835, Hannibal, Missouri, d. 1910, Redding, Connecticut.]

 The sun never looks through a photographic instrument that does not print a lie. The piece of glass it prints is well named a “negative”—a contradiction—a misrepresentation—a falsehood. I speak feelingly of this matter, because by turns the instrument has represented me to be a lunatic, A Solomon, a missionary, a burglar and an abject idiot. (1866) 

Charis Wilson
[Model, b. 1914, San Francisco, d. 2009, Santa Cruz, California.]

 I knew I really didn’t look that good, and that Edward [Weston] had glorified me, but it was a very pleasant thing to be glorified and I couldn’t wait to go back for more. 

Henri Cartier-Bresson
[Photographer and painter, b. 1908, Chanteloup, France, d. 2004, Paris.]

 There is something appalling about photographing people. It is certainly some sort of violation; so if sensitivity is lacking, there can be something barbaric about it. 

Marilyn Monroe (Norma Jeane Mortenson)
[Actress, b. 1926, Los Angeles, d. 1962, Los Angeles.]

 It’s like being screwed by a thousand guys and you can’t get pregnant. (On what happens between her and still cameras, to photographer Ernst Cunningham.) 

Susie Linfield
[Writer and critic, New York, lives in New York.]

 The best photographic portraits, like the best painted portraits, present us not with biographical information but with a soul. 

Sally Mann
[Photographer, b. 1951, Lexington, Virginia, lives in Lexington.]

 If transgression is at the very heart of photographic portraiture, then the ideal outcome—beauty, communion, honesty, empathy—mitigates the offense. 

Bill Brandt
[Photographer, b. 1904, Hamburg, Germany, d. 1983, London.]

 Andre Breton once said that a portrait should not only be an image but an oracle one questions, and that the photographer’s aim should be a profound likeness, which physically and morally predicts the subject’s entire future. 

Joyce Tenneson
[Photographer, b. 1945, Weston, Massachusetts, lives in New York.]

 A true portrait can never hide the inner life of its subject. It is interesting that in our culture we hide and cover the body, yet our faces are naked. Through a person’s face we can potentially see everything—the history and depth of that person’s life as well as their connection to an even deeper universal presence. 
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