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

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. 

James Agee
[Writer, b. 1909, Knoxville, Tennessee, d. 1955, New York.]

 Walker [Evans] setting up the terrible structure of the tripod crested by the black square heavy head, dangerous as that of a hunchback, of the camera; stooping beneath cloak and cloud of wicked cloth, and twisting buttons; a witchcraft preparing, colder than keenest ice, and incalculably cruel. (On Walker Evans photographing three tenant farmer families in Hale County, Alabama, 1936) 

Andy Warhol
[Artist, b. 1928, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, d. 1987, New York.]

 I just [take pictures] because the camera is something to carry around in my pocket. 

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

 Every image of the past that is not recognised by the present as one of its own threatens to disappear irretrievably. 

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

 Contrary to what is suggested by the humanist claims made for photography, the camera’s ability to transform reality into something beautiful derives from its relative weakness as a means of conveying the truth. 

James Nachtwey
[Photographer, b. 1948, Syracuse, New York, lives in New York.]

 Is it possible to put an end to a form of human behavior which has existed throughout history by means of photography? The proportions of that notion seem ridiculously out of balance. Yet, that very idea has motivated me. 

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

 Every time I go through something scary, traumatic, I survive by taking pictures. 

Robert Doisneau
[Photographer, b. 1912, Gentilly, Val-de-Marne, France, d. 1994, Montrouge, France.]

 A hundredth of a second here, a hundredth of a second there—even if you put them end to end, they still only add up to one, two, perhaps three seconds, snatched from eternity.