Emmet Gowin
[Photographer, b. 1941, Danville, Virginia, lives in Princeton, New Jersey.]

 [In nature] we may even glimpse the means with which to accept ourselves. Before nature, what I see does not truly belong to anyone; I know that I cannot have it, in fact, I’m not sure what I’m seeing. 

Lewis Baltz
[Photographer, b. 1945, Newport Beach, California, d. 2014, Paris.]

 I was living in Monterey, a place where the classic photographers—the Westons, Wynn Bullock and Ansel Adams—came for a privileged view of nature. But my daily life very rarely took me to Point Lobos or Yosemite; it took me to shopping centers, and gas stations and all the other unhealthy growth that flourished beside the highway. It was a landscape that no one else had much interest in looking at. Other than me. 

John Muir
[Self-described "Poetico-trampo-geologist-botanist and ornithologist-naturalist etc.", b. 1838, Dunbar, Scotland, d. 1914, Los Angeles.]

 See how willingly Nature poses herself upon photographers’ plates. No earthly chemicals are so sensitive as those of the human soul. 

Robert Adams
[Photographer and writer, b. 1937, Orange, New Jersey, lives in Astoria, Oregon.]

 Nature photography… that acknowledges what is wrong, is admittedly sometimes hard to bear—it has to encompass our mistakes. Yet in the long run, it is important; in order to endure our age of apocalypse, we have to be reconciled not only to avalanche and hurricane, but to ourselves. 

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

 The world is going to pieces and people like Adams and Weston are photographing rocks! (1930s) 

Walker Evans
[Photographer, b. 1903, St. Louis, Missouri, d. 1975, New Haven, Connecticut.]

 Color is vulgar, beauty is unimportant, and nature is trivial. 

Ralph Steiner
[Photographer, b. 1899, Cleveland, Ohio, d. 1986, Hanover, New Hampshire.]

 I say to young photographers, “What in God’s name are you doing, taking a picture of a tree or a mountain? That’s crazy! What you should do is take a person by the hand and show him the tree or the mountain itself. Why show him a stupid picture? It’s flat and it’s tiny compared to the mountain. The mountain is magnificent and has power ...” 

Sally Mann
[Photographer, b. 1951, Lexington, Virginia, lives in Lexington.]

 Working in the inexhaustible natural pageant before me, I came to wonder if the artist who commands the landscape might in fact hold the keys to the secrets of the human heart: place, personal history, and metaphor. 
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