Berenice Abbott
[Photographer, writer, teacher, b. 1898, Springfield, Ohio, d. 1991, Monson, Maine.]

 [Composition is] as closely tied up with the body of the picture as veins and muscles are articulated with the human body. 
 Does not the very word “creative” mean to build, to initiate, to give out, to act—rather than to be acted upon, to be subjective? Living photography is positive in its approach, it sings a song of life—not death. 
 Photography can only represent the present. Once photographed, the subject becomes part of the past. 
 The photographer’s punctillo is his recognition of the now—to see it so clearly that he looks through it to the past and senses the future. This is a big order and demands wisdom as well as understanding of one’s time. 
 The more you do, the more you realize there is to do, what a vast object the metropolis is, and how the work of photographing could go on forever. 
 Living photography builds up, does not tear down. It proclaims the dignity of man. Living photography is positive in its approach; it sings a song of life. 
 The world today has been conditioned, overwhelmingly, to visualize. The picture has almost replaced the word as a means of communication. 
 To chart a course, one must have a direction. In reality, the eye is no better than the philosophy behind it. The photographer creates, evolves a better, more selective, more acute eye by looking ever more sharply at what is going on in the world. Like every other means of expression, photography, if it is to be utterly honest and direct, should be related to the life of the times—the pulse of today. The photograph may be presented as finely and artistically as you will, but to merit serious consideration, must be directly connected with the world we live in. 
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