Seven Inspiring Quotes from Timeless Photographers

Seven Inspiring Quotes from Timeless Photographers

Everyone’s life journey is different and often the road of the bravest leads to the most unexpected discoveries and inspiring experiences. It is never someone else’s decision of which path we take in our way and what we become. Henri Matisse, one of the giants of modern art, once said that creativity takes courage and I can’t agree more. We, as humans, have an obligation to grow as a person, as a professional,and as an artist, and inspiration plays a major role in this process.

The ones we admire always serve as fuel for us to go beyond ourselves, do better each time, be braver, and eventually be proud of our achievements. Here are the inspiring quotes of seven of the best photographers of all times, with their very own way of vision. 


Annie Leibovitz (1949 - nowdays)

​She needs no introduction being one of the most famous photographers alive today. Leibovitz is the only woman to have held an exhibition at London’s National Portrait Gallery.

The camera makes you forget you’re there. It’s not like you are hiding but you forget, you are just looking so much.



Dorothea Lange (1895 - 1965 )

Lange was an influential photojournalist whose portraits of displaced farmers during the Great Depression had a great impact later in documentary photography. One of her most renowned photographs is the "Migrant Mother."

Photography takes an instant out of time, altering life by holding it still.


Henri Cartier-Bresson (1908 – 2004)

Another photographer, who doesn't need an introduction, Henri Cartier-Bresson, the master of candid photography who had a big influence on street-photography development. 

To photograph is to hold one’s breath, when all faculties converge to capture fleeting reality. It’s at that precise moment that mastering an image becomes a great physical and intellectual joy.


Robert Mapplethorpe (1946-1989)

An American artist famous for his highly stylized black and white medium of photography. He did celebrity portraits and self-portraits, nudes, still-life images of flowers. 

The more pictures you see, the better you are as a photographer.


Ansel Adams (1902 - 1984)

Ansel Easton Adams excelled in black-and-white landscape photography and hoped that his work would encourage self expression in others, and raise excitement towards the beauty of the great world around us.

The single most important component of a camera is the twelve inches behind it.


George Bernard Shaw (1856-1950)

Besides being a Nobel Laureate and Oscar-winning playwright, critic, and passionate socialist, he also was an avid photographer. 

A photographer is like a cod, which produces a million eggs in order that one may reach maturity.


Imogen Cunningham (1883 - 1976)

Cunningham specialized in botanical photography, nudes, and industrial landscapes and is one of photography's early pioneers. She established the Imogen Cunningham Trust to manage her archives after her death.

Which of my photographs is my favorite? The one I am going to take tomorrow.  


Feel free to add more quotes in the comments and make us even more inspired ! 

via: Adorama 

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Manuel Yumar's picture

loved Imogen Cunningham phrase by far

Emma Grigoryan's picture

I think that's a remarkable quote, something pushing forward indeed.

Chris Himstedt's picture

I agree with ALL of these quotes.

Jim Hofman's picture

I saw an interesting quote a couple days ago in an article about the Steve McCurry flap. National Geographic commented about photo manipulation and said:

"A photographer is a reporter—a photon thief, if you will. He goes and takes, with a delicate instrument, an extremely thin slice of life."

Roberto Alonso's picture

That's all nice and good, but the one that truly resonates with me is this one:

“Anything more than 500 yards from the car just isn’t photogenic.” – Edward Weston

(tongue firmly planted in cheek – or maybe not)

Emma Grigoryan's picture

that's an interesting point of view, but very specific :)

Prefers Film's picture

Never take your mother to a Weston/Mapplethorpe exhibit at the ICP.

Just sayin'...