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101 Most Inspirational Photography Quotes

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November 02, 202212 min read

“Photography is the story I fail to put into words .” - Destin Sparks

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It makes perfect sense that photography quotes are among the most popular subjects shared across social media

Reading a quote that perfectly embodies our admiration for photography and artwork can remind us why we like taking pictures and if we should make it a point to capture daily moments with our cameras.

With that said, here are 101 best photography quotes to inspire your creative journey! 👊

Every artist has a central story to tell, and the difficulty, the impossible task, is trying to present that story in pictures”
– Gregory Crewdson

  • “I have always been fascinated by the poetic condition of twilight. By its transformative quality. Its power of turning the ordinary into something magical and otherworldly. “
    – Gregory Crewdson

  • “Your inspiration is better if it comes from many different sources and your sensibilities will transform all those influences and inspiration into your own visual world. It’s like reading the book instead of watching the movie.”
    – Peter Lindbergh

  • "To me, photography must suggest, not insist or explain.” 
    – Brassai

  • “The formula for doing a good job in photography is to think like a poet.”
    -Imogen Cunningham

  • “We see in colour all the time. Black and white is therefore immediately an interpretation of the world, rather than a copy.”
    – Michael Kenna

  • “The golden rule in the arts, as far as I am concerned, is that all rules are meant to be broken.”
    -Michael Kenna

  • “Skill in photography is acquired by practice, and not by purchase.”
    -Percy W. Harris

  • “If I have any ‘message’ worth giving to a beginner it is that there are no shortcuts in photography.” 
    – Edward Weston

  • “After following the crowd for a while, I’d then go 180 degrees in the exact opposite direction. It always worked for me.”
    – Elliott Erwitt

  • “You photograph with all your ideology.”
    – Sebastiao Salgado


When you photograph a face, you capture the soul behind it - Jean-Luggodard

  • “Photography is a means by which we learn to see the ordinary.”
    – David Bailey

  • “Kodak sells film, but they don’t advertise film; they advertise memories.”
    – Theodore Levitt

  • “A photograph is like a recipe – the memory is the finished dish.”
    – Carrie Latet

  • “Contrast is what makes photography interesting.”
    – Conrad Hall

  • “Photography has no rules, it is not a sport. It is the result which counts, no matter how it is achieved.”
    – Bill Brandt

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We are making photographs to understand what our lives mean to us. - Ralph Hattersley

  • “When the world asks, “what was it like?” Only the photographers can say, “See!”
    – Mark Denman

  • “I didn’t choose photography, photography chose me.”
    – Gerardo Suter

  • “With photography, a new language has been created. Now, for the first time, it is possible to express reality by reality. We can look at an impression as long as we wish, we can delve into it and, so to speak, renew past experiences at will.”
    – Ernst Haas

  • Once photography enters your bloodstream, it is like a disease.”
    – Anon

  • “When a photo of a person looks deep into your spirit and tells you a thousand stories….. Stories from your past even before you existed, then the photo is way above any description.”
    – Sameh Elsayed


Your first 10,000 photographs are your worst - Henri Cartier-Bresson

  •  The limitations in your photography are in yourself, for what we see is what we are.”
    – Ernst Hass

  • “When I photograph, what I’m really doing is seeking answers to things.”
    – Wynn Bullock

  • “Photography takes an instant out of time, altering life by holding it still.”
    – Dorothea Lange


“Photography is an itch that won’t go away. No matter how much you scratch it.”
– Dara McGrath

  • “Photography is the recording of strangeness and beauty with beguiling precision.”
    – Sebastian Smee

    31. “It is more important to click with people than to click the shutter.”
    – Alfred Eisenstaedt

  • “I like to photograph others before they know what their best angles are.”
    – Ellen Von Unwerth

  • “Life is like a camera. Just focus on what’s important and capture the good times, develop from the negatives, and if things don’t work out, just take another shot.”
    – Anon

  • “Only photograph what you love.”
    – Tim Walker

  • “We are making photographs to understand what our lives mean to us.”
    – Ralph Hattersley


Great photography is about depth of feeling, not depth of field. - Peter Adams

  • “One advantage of photography is that it’s visual and can transcend language.”
    – Lisa Kristine

  • “My camera is my passport.”
    – Steve McCurry

  • .”Photography, to me, is catching a moment which is passing, and which is true.”
    – Jacques-Henri Lartigue

  • “The camera is an excuse to be someplace you otherwise don’t belong. It gives me both a point of connection and a point of separation.”
    – Susan Meiselas

  • “Most things in life are moments of pleasure and a lifetime of embarrassment; photography is a moment of embarrassment and a lifetime of pleasure.”
    – Tony Benn


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The camera sees more than the eye, so why not make use of it? - Edward Weston

  • “It’s amazing how photography can capture just a split second of something exquisite.”
    – Kiera Cass

  • “The camera sees more than the eye, so why not make use of it?”
    – Edward Weston

  • “I love the people I photograph. I mean, they’re my friends. I’ve never met most of them or I don’t know them at all, yet through the image, I live with them.”
    – Bruce Gilden

  • “Photography is the simplest thing in the world, but it is incredibly complicated to make it really work.”
    – Martin Parr

  • “In photography, there are no shadows that cannot be illuminated.”
    – August Sander


Photography is a major force in explaining humanity to man - Edward Stuichen

  • “The camera is much more than a recording apparatus, it is a medium via which messages reach us from another world.”
    – Orson Welles

  • “I never have taken a picture I’ve intended. They’re always better or worse.”
    – Diane Arbus

  • “To me, photography is an art of observation. It’s about finding something interesting in an ordinary place…”
    – Eliott Erwitt

  • “Today everything exists to end in a photograph.”
    – Susan Sontag


“The art of photography is all about directing the attention of the viewer.”
– Steven Pinker

  • The camera is an instrument that teaches people how to see without a camera - Dorothea Lange

  • “Photography is an immediate reaction, drawing is a meditation.”
    – Henri Cartier-Bresson

  • “Beauty can be seen in all things, seeing and composing the beauty is what separates the snapshot from the photograph.”
    – Matt Hardy

  • “If I could tell the story in words, I wouldn’t need to lug around a camera.”
    – Lewis Hine

  •  “Photography has been my way of bearing witness to the joy I find in seeing the extraordinary in ordinary.”
    -Harold Feinstein

  • “You don’t take a photograph, you make it.”
    – Ansel Adams


    "If I could tell the story in words, I wouldn't need to lug around a camera! - Lewis Hine

    • “Always shoot from the shadow side.”
      – Ted Grant

    • “Light makes photography. Embrace light. Admire it. Love it. But above all, know light. Know it for all you are worth, and you will know the key to photography.”
      – George Eastman

    • “What I like about photographs is that they capture a moment that’s gone forever, impossible to reproduce.”
      – Karl Lagerfeld

    • “The artist’s world is limitless. It can be found anywhere far from where he lives or a few feet away. It is always on his doorstep.” 
      – Paul Strand

    • “God creates the beauty. My camera and I are a witness.”
      Mark Denman


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

  • “If you see something that moves you, and then snap it, you keep a moment.”
    – Linda McCartney

  • “To me, photography is the simultaneous recognition, in a fraction of a second, of the significance of an event.”
    – Henri Cartier-Bresson

  • “There are always two people in every photo: the photographer and the viewer.”
    – Ansel Adams

  • “A photograph is a secret about a secret. The more it tells you the less you know.”
    – Diane Arbus

  • “Taking pictures is savoring life intensely, every hundredth of a second.”
    – Marc Riboud

  • “Once you learn to care, you can record images with your mind or on film. There is no difference between the two.”
    – Anon

  • “Photograph: a picture painted by the sun without instruction in art.”
    – Ambrose Bierce

  • “My own eyes are no more than scouts on a preliminary search, or the camera’s eye may entirely change my idea.”
    – Edward Weston

  • “Photography is truth. The cinema is truth twenty-four times per second.”
    – Jean-Luc Godard

  • Today everything exists to end in a photograph - Susan Sontaq

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    “Which of my photographs is my favourite? The one I'm going to take tomorrow - Imogene Cunningham


    • “The painter constructs, the photographer discloses.”
      – Susan Sontag

    • “It is my intention to present – through the medium of photography – intuitive observations of the natural world which may have meaning to the spectators.”
      – Ansel Adams

    • “The camera is an instrument that teaches people how to see without a camera.”
      – Dorothea Lange

    • “Actually, I’m not all that interested in the subject of photography. Once the photo is in the box, I’m not all that interested in what happens next. Hunters, after all, aren’t cooks.”
      – Henri Cartier-Bresson

    • “In my mind, I visualize how a particular… sight will appear on a print. If it excites me, there is a good chance it will make a good photograph. It is an intuitive sense, an ability that comes from a lot of practice.”
      – Ansel Adams


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“The photo that you took with your camera is the imagination you want to create with reality.”
– Scott Lorenzo

  • “In the world of photography, you get to share a captured moment with other people.”
    – James Wilson

  • “Your photography is a record of your living, for anyone who really sees.”
    – Paul Strand

  • “If the photographer is interested in the people in front of his lens, and if he is compassionate, it’s already a lot. The instrument is not the camera but the photographer.”
    – Eve Arnold

  • “Photographers stop photographing subjects too soon before they have exhausted the possibilities.” 
    – Dorothea Lange

  • “A thing that you see in my pictures is that I was not afraid to fall in love with these people.”
    – Annie Leibovitz

  • I go and get the camera and do it. Photography is a medium in which if you don’t do it then, very often you don’t do it at all, because it doesn’t happen twice.”
    – Paul Strand

  • A portrait is not made in the camera but on either side of it.”
    – Edward Steichen

  • “It’s one thing to make a picture of what a person looks like, it’s another thing to make a portrait of who they are.”
    – Paul Caponigro

  • “Taking pictures is like tiptoeing into the kitchen late at night and stealing Oreo cookies.”
    – Diane Arbus

  • “When you photograph people in color, you photograph their clothes. But when you photograph people in Black and white, you photograph their souls!”
    – Ted Grant

  • A good snapshot keeps a moment that s gone from running away.
    – Eudora Welty

  • “Photography deals exquisitely with appearances, but nothing is what it appears to be.”
    – Duane Michals

  • “ If you can’t feel what you’re looking at, then you’re never going to get others to feel anything when they look at your pictures.”
    – Don McCullin


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“It is an illusion that photos are made with the camera… they are made with the eye, heart, and head.”
-Henri Cartier-Bresson

  • “The negative is the equivalent of the composer’s score and the print the performance.”
    – Ansel Adams

  • “There is one thing the photo must contain – the humanity of the moment.”
    – Robert Frank

  • “Photography is a way of feeling, of touching, of loving. What you have caught on film is captured forever… It remembers little things, long after you have forgotten everything.”
    – Aaron Siskind

  • “If you are out there shooting, things will happen for you. If you’re not out there, you’ll only hear about it.”
    – Jay Maisel

  • “Photography is the art of making memories tangible.”
    – Destin Sparks

  • "We are making photographs to understand what our lives mean to us." - Raph Hattersley

  • "You don't take a photograph, you make it" - Ansel Adams

  • “Your first 10,000 photographs are your worst.”
    Henri Cartier-Bresson

  • “Photography is an austere and blazing poetry of the real.”
    – Ansel Adams

  • “Photography is the story I fail to put into words.”
    – Destin Sparks

  • “When words become unclear, I shall focus with photographs. When images become inadequate, I shall be content with silence.”
    – Ansel Adams

  • “When I photograph I make love.”
    – Alfred Stieglitz

  • "I began to realize that the camera sees the world differently than the human eye and that sometimes those differences can make a photograph more powerful than what you actually observed."
    -
    Galen Rowell

  • "The two most engaging powers of a photograph are to make new things familiar and familiar things new."
    -
    William Thackeray

  • "Your photography is a record of your living, for anyone who really sees."
    -
    Paul Strand

  • "Whosoever possesses a camera should never know boredom."
    - Wayne Gerard Trotman

  • "When a photo of a person looks deep into your spirit and tells you a thousand stories….. Stories from your past even before you existed, then the photo is way above any description."
    - Sameh Elsayed


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