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

Joan Fontcuberta
[Photographer, b. 1955, Barcelona, lives in Barcelona.]

 I need there to be documentary photographers, because my work is meta-documentary; it is a commentary about the documentary use of photography. 

Leonard Freed
[Photographer, b. 1929, Brooklyn, New York, d. 2006, Garrison, New York.]

 Ultimately photography is about who you are. It’s the seeking of truth in relation to yourself. And seeking truth becomes a habit. 

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

 In photography, you’ve got to be quick, quick, quick, like an animal and a prey. 

Walter Benjamin
[Philosopher, critic, and theorist, b. 1892, Berlin, d. 1940, Port Bou, France.]

 Every day the urge grows stronger to get a hold of an object at very close range by way of its likeness, its reproduction. (1936) 

Man Ray (Emanuel Radnitsky)
[Artist, b. 1890, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, d. 1976, Paris.]

 Speaking of nudes, I have always had a great fondness for this subject, both in my paintings and in my photos, and I must admit, not for purely artistic reasons. 

Janet Malcolm
[Writer, b. 1934, Prague, Czechoslovakia, lives in New York.]

 The heavy odds against finding the desired… work of art in the mess and flux of life, as opposed to the serene orderliness of imagined reality, give a special tense dazzle and an atmosphere of tour de force to any photographs that succeed in the search. 

Bettina Rheims
[Photographer, b. 1952, Neuilly-sur-Seine, France, lives in Paris.]

 I think that I first started to shoot naked women because I wanted my father to look at my images and father liked very pretty women. 

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

 Photography is the only major art in which professional training and years of experience do not confer an insuperable advantage over the untrained and inexperienced—this for many reasons, among them the large role that chance (or luck) plays in the taking of pictures, and the bias toward the spontaneous, the rough, the imperfect.