60 Inspirational Photography Quotes to Inspire Photographers

Michael • April 1, 2024 • 5 min read

Inspirational Photography Quotes

Scrolling social media and feeling uninspired by the photos? You’re not alone! This slump hits even the best photographers. 

Dive into our collection of 60 inspirational photography quotes to reignite your creativity and capture stunning social media-worthy images again. Get ready to refresh your photographic spirit!

1. Why a Quote Can Spark a Photographic Fire

Sometimes, even the most passionate photographers hit a creative wall. We stare through the viewfinder, but nothing seems interesting. Inspiration can feel miles away, and our social media feeds start to reflect that lack of spark.

But that’s where the magic of inspirational quotes comes in. Words from legendary photographers can offer a fresh perspective, reminding us of the beauty and potential that surrounds us every day.

They can challenge us to experiment, to see the world in a new light, and to push our photographic boundaries.

After all, a spark of motivation is all it takes to turn an ordinary scene into an extraordinary social media masterpiece.

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2. Common Inspirational Photography Quotes

Feeling stuck in a photographic rut? Don’t worry, it happens to the best of us! To jumpstart your creative engine and capture those social media-worthy moments, here are 60 inspirational quotes from legendary photographers, divided into themes to guide your journey:

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

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

  3. Henri Cartier-Bresson: “To photograph is to hold one’s breath when all faculties converge to capture fleeting reality.”

  4. Steve McCurry: “The photograph itself doesn’t interest me. I want only to capture a minute part of reality.”

  5. Robert Capa: “If your pictures aren’t good enough, you’re not close enough.”

  6. Diane Arbus: “I really believe there are things nobody would see if I didn’t photograph them.”

  7. Richard Avedon: “A portrait is not made in the camera but on either side of it.”

  8. Edward Steichen: “A photograph is a secret about a secret. The more it tells you, the less you know.”

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

  10. Elliott Erwitt: “Photography is an art of observation. It’s about finding something interesting in an ordinary place.”

  11. David Alan Harvey: “Don’t shoot what it looks like. Shoot what it feels like.”

  12. Annie Leibovitz: “One doesn’t stop seeing. One doesn’t stop framing. It doesn’t turn off and turn on. It’s on all the time.”

  13. Gordon Parks: “I saw that the camera could be a weapon against poverty, against racism, against all sorts of social wrongs.”

  14. Yousuf Karsh: “Look and think before opening the shutter. The heart and mind are the true lens of the camera.”

  15. Irving Penn: “A good photograph is one that communicates a fact, touches the heart, and leaves the viewer a changed person for having seen it.”

  16. Sally Mann: “Photographs open doors into the past but they also allow a look into the future.”

  17. Peter Adams: “Great photography is about depth of feeling, not depth of field.”

  18. Don McCullin: “Photography for me is not looking, it’s feeling. 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.”

  19. Vivian Maier: “The camera is a license to explore.”

  20. Sebastião Salgado: “If you take a photograph of a human that does not make him noble, there is no reason to take this photograph. That is my way of seeing things.”

  21. Susan Sontag: “To photograph is to confer importance.”

  22. Bill Brandt: “A good photograph is like a good hound dog, dumb, but eloquent.”

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

  24. Walker Evans: “Stare. It is the way to educate your eye, and more. Stare, pry, listen, eavesdrop. Die knowing something. You are not here long.”

  25. Bruce Davidson: “I’m always looking outside, trying to look inside. Trying to tell something that’s true. But maybe nothing is really true. Except what’s out there. And what’s out there is constantly changing.”

  26. Mary Ellen Mark: “The obsessions we have are pretty much the same our whole lives. Mine are people, the human condition, life.”

  27. James Nachtwey: “I have been a witness, and these pictures are my testimony. The events I have recorded should not be forgotten and must not be repeated.”

  28. Joel Meyerowitz: “You can find pictures anywhere. It’s simply a matter of noticing things and organizing them. You just have to care about what’s around you and have a concern with humanity and the human comedy.”

  29. Eve Arnold: “It is the photographer, not the camera, that is the instrument.”

  30. Robert Frank: “The eye should learn to listen before it looks.”

  31. Man Ray: “I do not photograph nature. I photograph my visions.”

  32. Edward Weston: “Composition is the strongest way of seeing.”

  33. David Hurn: “The important thing is not the camera but the eye.”

  34. Henri Cartier-Bresson: “Photography is, for me, a spontaneous impulse coming from an ever attentive eye which captures the moment and its eternity.”

  35. W. Eugene Smith: “Photography is a small voice, at best, but sometimes one photograph, or a group of them, can lure our sense of awareness.”

  36. Ansel Adams: “A photograph is usually looked at – seldom looked into.”

  37. Lara Jade: “Don’t be afraid to experiment. Your first idea is rarely your best idea.”

  38. Chase Jarvis: “The best camera is the one that’s with you.”

  39. Cindy Sherman: “I like making images that from a distance seem kind of seductive, colorful, luscious, and engaging, and then you realize what you’re looking at is something totally opposite.”

  40. Tim Walker: “Only photograph what you love.

  41. Trent Parke: “The camera is both a way of life and not enough to live by.”

  42. Minor White: “Photography is a language more universal than words.”

  43. Andreas Feininger: “The creative photographer sets free the human contents of objects; and imparts humanity to the inhuman world around him.”

  44. Aaron Siskind: “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.”

  45. Elliott Erwitt: “To me, photography is an art of observation. It’s about finding something interesting in an ordinary place… I’ve found it has little to do with the things you see and everything to do with the way you see them.”

  46. Gertrude Käsebier: “I earnestly advise women of all ages to become familiar with the camera. It can be a comfort, a distraction, a hobby, and a profession.”

  47. Berenice Abbott: “Photography helps people to see.”

  48. Duane Michals: “Photographs are not ideas. They give us ideas.”

  49. David LaChapelle: “I believe in a visual language that should be as strong as the written word.”

  50. Annie Griffiths: “A camera is a tool for learning how to see without a camera.”

  51. Sebastião Salgado: “I don’t photograph subjects. I photograph the way they make me feel.”

  52. Frans Lanting: “The world is beautiful and we are stewards of its beauty.”

  53. Sam Abell: “A photograph is like the recipe – a memory the finished dish.”

  54. Arthur Fellig (Weegee): “I don’t take pictures. I make pictures.”

  55. Lisette Model: “Photography is the easiest art, which perhaps makes it the hardest.”

  56. Alex Webb: “A street photograph has to work really hard. It has to tell a story in 1/125th of a second.”

  57. Raghu Rai: “A photograph has picked up a fact of life, and that fact will live forever.”

  58. Graciela Iturbide: “To me, photography is an act of justice.”

  59. Michael Kenna: “I often think of that rare fulfilling joy when I am in the presence of some wonderful alignment of events. Where the light, the color, the shapes, and the balance all come together in a harmonious state and everything feels right.”

  60. Fan Ho: “The camera is my tool. Through it, I give a reason to everything around me.

These quotes not only reflect the diverse perspectives and philosophies of different photographers but also serve as a source of inspiration and contemplation for anyone passionate about the art of photography.

What are your Inspirational Photography Quotes? Let us know in the comments.

By Furoore team member Michael
Furoore Team is here to assist you in capturing the most significant moments in your life. To create exciting photographs, discover photography guides, find unique photo ideas, and limitless image inspiration.


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