135+ Photography Quotes To Increase Your Passion

Photography Quotes

Photography is the art, science, and practice of capturing images using light. It involves using a camera to capture visual information and create a permanent record of a moment, scene, or subject. The term “photography” is derived from the Greek words “photos” (light) and “graphos” (to write or draw), essentially meaning “drawing with light.”

Photographs are typically created by focusing light through a lens onto a light-sensitive surface, such as film or a digital sensor. The composition, lighting, framing, and timing are all important aspects of photography that contribute to the final image’s quality and impact.

Photography has evolved significantly over time, from early black-and-white images to modern digital photography. It serves various purposes, including artistic expression, documentation, journalism, advertising, scientific research, and more. Photographs can convey emotions, tell stories, capture beauty, and provide a visual record of history and events.

Photography Quotes

1. “If your photos aren’t good enough, then you’re not close enough.”
— Robert Capa

2. “When words become unclear, I shall focus with photographs. When images become inadequate, I shall be content with silence.”
— Ansel Adams

3. “In photography there is a reality so subtle that it becomes more real than reality.”
— Alfred Stieglitz

4. “There is one thing the photograph must contain, the humanity of the moment.”
— Robert Frank

5. “Taking an image, freezing a moment, reveals how rich reality truly is.”
— Anonymous

6. “Photography is a way of feeling, of touching, of loving. What you have caught on film is captured forever… It remembers little things, long after you have forgotten everything.”
— Aaron Siskind

7. “When I have a camera in my hand, I know no fear.”
— Alfred Eisenstaedt

8. “We are making photographs to understand what our lives mean to us.”
— Ralph Hattersley

9. “A thing that you see in my pictures is that I was not afraid to fall in love with these people.”
— Annie Leibovitz

10. “I’m not all that interested in the subject of photography. Once the picture is in the box, I’m not all that interested in what happens next. Hunters, after all, aren’t cooks.”
— Henri Cartier-Bresson

11. “You don’t take a photograph. You ask quietly to borrow it.”
— Unknown

12. “Photography for me is not looking, it’s feeling. If you can’t feel what you’re looking at, then you’re never going to get others to feel anything when they look at your pictures.”
— Don McCullin

13. “If it excites me, there is a good chance it will make a good photograph.”
— Ansel Adams

14. “A portrait is not made in the camera but on either side of it.”
— Edward Steichen

15. “It’s one thing to make a picture of what a person looks like, it’s another thing to make a portrait of who they are.”
— Paul Caponigro

16. “The best thing about a picture is that it never changes, even when the people in it do.”
— Andy Warhol

17. “Taking pictures is like tiptoeing into the kitchen late at night and stealing Oreo cookies.”
— Diane Arbus

18. “What makes photography a strange invention is that its primary raw materials are time and light.”
— John Berger

19. “To me, photography is an art of observation. It’s about finding something interesting in an ordinary place… I’ve found it has little to do with the things you see and everything to do with the way you see them.”
— Elliott Erwitt

20. “The picture that you took with your camera is the imagination you want to create with reality.”
— Scott Lorenzo

21. “If the photographer is interested in the people in front of his lens, and if he is compassionate, it’s already a lot. The instrument is not the camera but the photographer.”
— Eve Arnold

22. “A tear contains an ocean. A photographer is aware of the tiny moments in a persons life that reveal greater truths.”
— Anonymous

23. “The camera is an instrument that teaches people how to see without a camera.”
— Dorothea Lange

24. “Essentially what photography is is life lit up.”
— Sam Abell

25. “…We are there with our cameras to record reality. Once we start modifying that which exists, we are robbing photography of its most valuable attribute.”
— Philip Jones Griffiths

26. “I don’t trust words. I trust pictures.”
— Gilles Peress

27. “It is my intention to present – through the medium of photography – intuitive observations of the natural world which may have meaning to the spectators.”
— Ansel Adams

28. “I really believe there are things nobody would see if I didn’t photograph them.”
— Diane Arbus

29. “It’s about reacting to what you see, hopefully without preconception. You can find pictures anywhere. It’s simply a matter of noticing things and organizing them. You just have to care about what’s around you and have a concern with humanity and the human comedy.”
— Elliott Erwitt

30. “Photographs open doors into the past, but they also allow a look into the future.”
— Sally Mann

31. “Taking pictures is savoring life intensely, every hundredth of a second.”
— Marc Riboud

32. “It’s more important for a photographer to have very good shoes, than to have a very good camera.”
— Sebastiao Salgado

33. “Once you learn to care, you can record images with your mind or on film. There is no difference between the two.”
— Anonymous

34. “Photograph: a picture painted by the sun without instruction in art.”
— Ambrose Bierce

35. “Every artist has a central story to tell, and the difficulty, the impossible task, is trying to present that story in pictures.”
— Gregory Crewdson

36. “Photography is truth.”
— Jean-Luc Godard

37. “Photographers mistake the emotion they feel while taking the photo as a judgment that the photograph is good.”
— Garry Winogrand

38. “Photography can only represent the present. Once photographed, the subject becomes part of the past.”
— Berenice Abbott

39. “The pictures are there, and you just take them.”
— Robert Capa

40. “Photography has nothing to do with cameras.”
— Lucas Gentry

41. “The camera makes you forget you’re there. It’s not like you are hiding but you forget, you are just looking so much.”
— Annie Leibovitz

42. “If you see something that moves you, and then snap it, you keep a moment.”
— Linda McCartney

43. “There are always two people in every picture: the photographer and the viewer.”
— Ansel Adams

44. “The more pictures you see, the better you are as a photographer.”
— Robert Mapplethorpe

45. “I am not interested in shooting new things – I am interested to see things new.”
— Ernst Haas

46. “Photography to me is catching a moment which is passing, and which is true.”
— Jacques-Henri Lartigue

47. “Photography is the story I fail to put into words.”
— Destin Sparks

48. “A photograph is a secret about a secret. The more it tells you the less you know.”
— Diane Arbus

49. “A good snapshot keeps a moment from running away.”
— Eudora Welty

50. “Sharpness is a bourgeois concept.”
— Henri Cartier-Bresson

51. “If you are out there shooting, things will happen for you. If you’re not out there, you’ll only hear about it.”
— Jay Maisel

52. “It is an illusion that photos are made with the camera… they are made with the eye, heart and head.”
— Henri Cartier-Bresson

53. “The whole point of taking pictures is so that you don’t have to explain things with words.”
— Elliott Erwitt

54. “It’s not the photographer who makes the picture, but the person being photographed.”
— Sebastiao Salgado

55. “Be yourself. I much prefer seeing something, even it is clumsy, that doesn’t look like somebody else’s work.”
— William Klein

56. “To know ahead of time what you’re looking for means you’re then only photographing your own preconceptions, which is very limiting, and often false.”
— Dorothea Lange

57. “One doesn’t stop seeing. One doesn’t stop framing. It doesn’t turn off and turn on. It’s on all the time.”
— Annie Leibovitz

58. “Photography takes an instant out of time, altering life by holding it still.”
— Dorothea Lange

59. “What I like about photographs is that they capture a moment that’s gone forever, impossible to reproduce.”
— Karl Lagerfeld

60. “No place is boring, if you’ve had a good night’s sleep and have a pocket full of unexposed film.”
— Robert Adams

61. “A good photograph is one that communicates a fact, touches the heart and leaves the viewer a changed person for having seen it. It is, in a word, effective.”
— Irving Penn

62. “There is only you and your camera. The limitations in your photography are in yourself, for what we see is what we are.”
— Ernst Haas

63. “To consult the rules of composition before making a picture is a little like consulting the law of gravitation before going for a walk.”
— Edward Weston

64. “Wherever there is light, one can photograph.”
— Alfred Stieglitz

65. “Since I’m inarticulate, I express myself with images.”
— Helen Levitt

66. “Beauty can be seen in all things, seeing and composing the beauty is what separates the snapshot from the photograph.”
— Matt Hardy

67. “Photography is pretty simple stuff. You just react to what you see, and take many, many pictures.”
— Elliott Erwitt

68. “You don’t take a photograph, you make it.”
— Ansel Adams

69. “With photography, I like to create a fiction out of reality. I try and do this by taking society’s natural prejudice and giving this a twist.”
— Martin Parr

70. “When people ask me what equipment I use – I tell them my eyes.”
— Anonymous

71. “Photography is the simplest thing in the world, but it is incredibly complicated to make it really work.”
— Martin Parr

72. “I wish that all of nature’s magnificence, the emotion of the land, the living energy of place could be photographed.”
— Annie Leibovitz

73. “I never have taken a picture I’ve intended. They’re always better or worse.”
— Diane Arbus

74. “All photographs are accurate. None of them is the truth.”
— Richard Avedon

75. “Today everything exists to end in a photograph.”
— Susan Sontag

76. “I suspect it is for one’s self-interest that one looks at one’s surroundings and one’s self. This search is personally born and is indeed my reason and motive for making photographs.”
— Lee Friedlander

77. “The eye should learn to listen before it looks.”
— Robert Frank

78. “Photography is about finding out what can happen in the frame. When you put four edges around some facts, you change those facts.”
— Garry Winogrand

79. “You can look at a picture for a week and never think of it again. You can also look at the picture for a second and think of it all your life.”
— Joan Miro

80. “Light makes photography. Embrace light. Admire it. Love it. But above all, know light. Know it for all you are worth, and you will know the key to photography.”
— George Eastman

81. “I think good dreaming is what leads to good photographs.”
— Wayne Miller

82. “Photography is a medium in which if you don’t do it then, very often you don’t do it at all, because it doesn’t happen twice.”
— Paul Strand

83. “The photograph itself doesn’t interest me. I want only to capture a minute part of reality.”
— Henri Cartier-Bresson

84. “I love the people I photograph. I mean, they’re my friends. I’ve never met most of them or I don’t know them at all, yet through my images I live with them.”
— Bruce Gilden

85. “If you want to be a better photographer, stand in front of more interesting stuff.”
— Jim Richardson

86. “To photograph is to hold one’s breath, when all faculties converge to capture fleeting reality. It’s at that precise moment that mastering an image becomes a great physical and intellectual joy.”
— Henri Cartier-Bresson

87. “One should really use the camera as though tomorrow you’d be stricken blind.”
— Dorothea Lange

88. “Photography helps people to see.”
— Berenice Abbott

89. “Taking pictures is savoring life intensely every hundredth of a second.”
— Marc Riboud

90. “When I say I want to photograph someone, what it really means is that I’d like to know them. Anyone I know I photograph.”
— Annie Leibovitz

91. “A landscape image cuts across all political and national boundaries, it transcends the constraints of language and culture.”
— Charlie Waite

92. “My life is shaped by the urgent need to wander and observe, and my camera is my passport.”
— Steve McCurry

93. “There’s a time when people say your work is revolutionary, but you have to keep being revolutionary. I can’t keep shooting pop stars all my life. You have to keep changing, keep pushing yourself, looking for the new, the unusual.”
— Rankin

94. “Of course, there will always be those who look only at technique, who ask ‘how’, while others of a more curious nature will ask ‘why’. Personally, I have always preferred inspiration to information.”
— Man Ray

95. “Look and think before opening the shutter. The heart and mind are the true lens of the camera.”
— Yousuf Karsh

96. “Don’t pack up your camera until you’ve left the location.”
— Joe McNally

97. “The camera sees more than the eye, so why not make use of it?”
— Edward Weston

98. “The best images are the ones that retain their strength and impact over the years, regardless of the number of times they are viewed.”
— Anne Geddes

99. “Photography is a small voice, at best, but sometimes one photograph, or a group of them, can lure our sense of awareness.”
— W. Eugene Smith

100. “If a photographer cares about the people before the lens and is compassionate, much is given. It is the photographer, not the camera, that is the instrument.”
— Eve Arnold

101. “The camera is an excuse to be someplace you otherwise don’t belong. It gives me both a point of connection and a point of separation.”
— Susan Meiselas

102. “Most things in life are moments of pleasure and a lifetime of embarrassment; photography is a moment of embarrassment and a lifetime of pleasure.”
— Tony Benn

103. “Your first 10,000 photographs are your worst.”
— Henri Cartier-Bresson

104. “Photography is an austere and blazing poetry of the real.”
— Ansel Adams

105. “It is more important to click with people than to click the shutter.”
— Alfred Eisenstaedt

106. “I like to photograph anyone before they know what their best angles are.”
— Ellen Von Unwerth

107. “Seeing is not enough; you have to feel what you photograph.”
— Andre Kertesz

108. “The best camera is the one that’s with you.”
— Chase Jarvis

109. “When you photograph people in color, you photograph their clothes. But when you photograph people in Black and white, you photograph their souls!”
— Ted Grant

110. “Great photography is about depth of feeling, not depth of field.”
— Peter Adams

112. “Life is like a camera. Just focus on what’s important and capture the good times, develop from the negatives and if things don’t work out, just take another shot.”
— Unknown

113. “I’m an amateur photographer, apart from being a professional one, and I think maybe my amateur pictures are the better ones.”
— Elliott Erwitt

114. “Only photograph what you love.”
— Tim Walker

115. “Twelve significant photographs in any one year is a good crop.”
— Ansel Adams

116. “Photographers stop photographing subjects too soon before they have exhausted the possibilities.”
— Dorothea Lange

117. “A good photograph is knowing where to stand.”
— Ansel Adams

118. “If I could tell the story in words, I wouldn’t need to lug around a camera.”
— Lewis Hine

119. “In photography there are no shadows that cannot be illuminated.”
— August Sander

120. “Photography is a love affair with life.”
— Burk Uzzle

121. “To me, photography is the simultaneous recognition in a fraction of a second of the significance of an event.”
— Henri Cartier-Bresson

122. “The painter constructs, the photographer discloses.”
— Susan Sontag

123. “When I photograph, what I’m really doing is seeking answers to things.”
— Wynn Bullock

124. “Character, like a photograph, develops in darkness.”
— Yousuf Karsh

125. “It’s weird that photographers spend years or even a whole lifetime, trying to capture moments that added together, don’t even amount to a couple of hours.”
— James Lalropui Keivom

127. “If I have any ‘message’ worth giving to a beginner it is that there are no shortcuts in photography.”
— Edward Weston

128. “A camera is a tool for learning how to see without a camera.”
— Dorothea Lange

129. “My job as a portrait photographer is to seduce, amuse and entertain.”
— Helmut Newton

130. “I think that emotional content is an image’s most important element, regardless of the photographic technique. Much of the work I see these days lacks the emotional impact to draw a reaction from viewers, or remain in their hearts.”
— Anne Geddes

131. “The camera is much more than a recording apparatus, it is a medium via which messages reach us from another world.”
— Orson Welles

132. “Once photography enters your bloodstream, it is like a disease.”
— Anonymous

133. “Everyone will take one great picture, I’ve done better because I’ve taken two.”
— David Bailey

134. “Composition is the strongest way of seeing.”
— Edward Weston

135. “Photography is 1% talent and 99% moving furniture.”
— Arnold Newman

136. “The negative is the equivalent of the composer’s score and the print the performance.”
— Ansel Adams

137. “Which of my photographs is my favorite? The one I’m going to take tomorrow.”
— Imogen Cunningham

138. “There is a creative fraction of a second when you are taking a picture. Your eye must see a composition or an expression that life itself offers you, and you must know with intuition when to click the camera. That is the moment the photographer is creative. Oop! The Moment! Once you miss it, it is gone forever.”
— Henri Cartier-Bresson