Harry Callahan
[Photographer, b. 1912, Detroit, Michigan, d. 1999, Atlanta, Georgia.]

 I think what photography can do really well is allow you to make a life’s work… So theoretically—the series is first, then the group is next, and the whole life’s work is the grand finale. (1979) 
 If you choose your subject selectively—intuitively—the camera can write poetry. 
 The difference between the casual impression and the intensified image is about as great as that separating the average business letter from a poem. 
 To be a photographer, one must photograph. No amount of book learning, no checklist of seminars attended, can substitute for the simple act of making pictures. Experience is the best teacher of all. And for that, there is no guarantee that one will become an artist. Only the journey matters. 
 I really didn’t have much to teach. I didn’t even believe in it. I felt so strongly that everybody had to find their own way... In terms of art, the only real answer that I know of is to do it. If you don’t do it, you don’t know what might happen. 
 I sort of believe that a picture is like a prayer; you’re offering a prayer to get something, and in a sense it’s like a gift of God because you have practically no control—at least I don’t. 
 I photograph continuously, often without a good idea or strong feelings. During this time the photos are nearly all poor but I believe they develop my seeing and help later on in other photos. 
 It takes me a long time to change. I don’t think you can just go out and figure out a bunch of visual ideas and photograph. The change happens in living and not through thinking. 
quotes 1-8 of 23
page 1 of 3 next page last page
display quotes