Shomei Tomatsu
[Photographer, b. 1930, Nagoya, Japan, d. 2012, Okinawa, Japan.]

 If I could, I would want to see everything: the affairs of others, the scene of a murder, the Pygmies in the African rain forest, the super-rich of Wall Street, the face of the man who stole three hundred million yen, the Sydney Opera House, the graveyard of ships in the Sargasso Sea, the tail of an orca, the plankton of the deep ocean, the inside of Prime Minister Sato’s belly, Mao Zedong, Mars, Cape Kennedy, Antarctic blizzards, the animal whose name is “sloth,” the pudendum of Marilyn Monroe. My eyes are infamously greedy:... to me, the stuff other photographers substitute for seeing is but a kind of pessimism. 

Bert Stern
[Photographer, b. 1929, Brooklyn, New York, d. 2013, New York.]

 ... her arm was up, like waving farewell. I saw what I wanted, I pressed the button, and she was mine. It was the last picture. (On photographing Marilyn Monroe six weeks before her death.) 

Bert Hardy
[Photographer, b. 1913, London, d. 1995, Oxted, England.]

 Although I do not usually like taking pictures of corpses, I controlled my feelings of rage for long enough to take some; without such evidence, no one would believe that anything like this had ever happened. (On photographing the liberation of the Bergen-Belsen Concentration Camp, April 19, 1945) 

Boris Yaro
[Photographer, b. 1938, lives in Northridge, California.]

 Let go, lady. Godammit, this is history! (Trying to get a clear shot of the dying Robert Kennedy.) 

Robert Kennedy
[Politician, b. 1925, Brookline, Massachusetts, d. 1968, Los Angeles, California.]

 I examined the pictures carefully, and what I saw appeared to be no more than the clearing of a field for a farm or the basement of a house. I was relieved to hear later that this was the same reaction of virtually everyone at the meeting, including President Kennedy. Even a few days later, when more work had taken place on the site, he remarked that it looked like a football field. (On aerial photographs that triggered the 1962 Cuban missile crisis.) 

Lee Miller
[Photographer and model, b. 1907, Poughkeepsie, New York, d. 1976, Sussex, England.]

 No question that German civilians knew what went on. Railway into Dachau camp runs past villa, with trains of dead or semi-dead deportees. I usually don’t take pictures of horrors. But don’t think that every town and every area isn’t rich with them. I hope Vogue will feel it can publish these pictures. (Cable from German front, May, 1945) 

W. Eugene Smith
[Photographer, b. 1918, Wichita, Kansas, d. 1978, Tucson, Arizona.]

 In printing the photographs of the white-gowned Klan members I ran into considerable difficulty. There were several with uncovered faces and these faces were vividly dark in comparison to the white-white of the gowns that it was almost impossible to keep them from appearing black. I am terribly sorry. (Apology to his editor about images from his 1951 photo essay on the Ku Klux Klan in North Carolina.)  

Alfred Eisenstaedt
[Photographer, b. 1898, Dirschau, West Prussia (now Tczew, Poland), d. 1995, New York.]

 [I was following the sailor] running along the street grabbing any and every girl in sight. Whether she was a grandmother, stout, thin, old, didn’t make any difference. None of the pictures that were possible pleased me. Then, suddenly in a flash, I saw something white being grabbed. I turned around and clicked the moment the sailor kissed the nurse. (On his Times Square photo taken in V-J Day.) 
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