49 Edward Weston Quotes from the American Photographer

Edward Weston, a significant American photographer from the early to mid-20th century, was renowned for his sharply focused and meticulously composed images of natural forms, landscapes and nudes.

Despite an early life marked by an incomplete education and a disconnect from the intellectual world, Weston’s passion for photography was ignited when he received a camera at 16.

Initially, he conformed to the Pictorialist style but grew restless and started gravitating towards a unique photographic aesthetic.

Edward Weston

Largely isolated from other photographic luminaries like Stieglitz and Steichen, Weston’s style was largely self-invented. His transformative journey in Mexico produced groundbreaking images.

Later, in California, his close-up studies of shells, vegetables and nudes became iconic. He pioneered a sharp, industrial style, becoming a founding member of Group f.64.

Weston’s artistic evolution continued, with his works growing in complexity and depth. Awarded the first Guggenheim Fellowship for a photographer, he faced health challenges in the 1940s, culminating in Parkinson’s disease.

He made his final photograph in 1948. Weston’s impact on photography has left a lasting legacy, influencing numerous successors.

Edward Weston became the first photographer to receive a Guggenheim Fellowship.

Let’s go through some of the quotes by Edward Weston.

Best Edward Weston Quotes


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


Dare to be irrational! – keep free from formulas, open to any fresh impulse, fluid. ~ Edward Weston.


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


I see no reason for recording the obvious. ~ Edward Weston.


No photographer is better than the simplest of cameras. ~ Edward Weston.


It’s hard not to tell the truth with a camera. Artists are particularly good at that. ~ Edward Weston.

Why limit yourself to what your eyes see when you have an opportunity to extend your vision? ~ Edward Weston.


My work is never intellectual. I never make a negative unless emotionally moved by my subject. ~ Edward Weston.

Photography to the amateur is recreation, to the professional it is work, and hard work too, no matter how pleasurable it may be. ~ Edward Weston.

Famous Edward Weston Quotes


A photograph has no value unless it looks exactly like a photograph and nothing else. ~ Edward Weston.

Art is based on order. The world is full of ‘sloppy Bohemians’ and their work betrays them. ~ Edward Weston.

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

I want the stark beauty that a lens can so exactly render presented without interference of artistic effect. ~ Edward Weston.


Results alone should be appraised; the way in which these are achieved is of importance only to the maker. ~ Edward Weston.

Modern Art is being used to index me. Surely it was a source but photographers have influenced Modern Art quite as deeply as they have been influenced, maybe more. Anyway painters don’t have a copyright on M. A. We were all born in the same upheaval. ~ Edward Weston.

For photography is a way to capture the moment – not just any moment, but the important one, this one moment out of all time when your subject is revealed to the fullest – that moment of perfection which comes once and is not repeated. ~ Edward Weston.

Top Edward Weston Quotes


I am not limiting myself to theories, so I never question the rightness to my approach. ~ Edward Weston.

Anything that excites me for any reason, I will photograph; not searching for unusual subject matter, but making the commonplace unusual. ~ Edward Weston.

My own eyes are no more than scouts on a preliminary search, for the camera’s eye may entirely change my idea, even switch me to different subject matter. So I start out with my mind as free from image as the silver film on which I am to record, and I hope as sensitive. ~ Edward Weston.

When subject matter is forced to fit into preconceived patterns, there can be no freshness of vision. Following rules of composition can only lead to a tedious repetition of pictorial clichés. ~ Edward Weston.

The photograph isolates and perpetuates a moment of time: an important and revealing moment, or an unimportant and meaningless one, depending upon the photographer’s understanding of his subject and mastery of his process. ~ Edward Weston.


The great scientist dares to differ from accepted ‘facts’ – think irrationally – let the artist do likewise. ~ Edward Weston.

Ultimately success or failure in photographing people depends on the photographer’s ability to understand his fellow man. ~ Edward Weston.

Popular Edward Weston Quotes

This then: to photograph a rock, have it look like a rock, but be more than a rock. ~ Edward Weston.

I find myself every so often looking at my ground glass as though the unrecorded image might escape me! ~ Edward Weston.


To compose a subject well means no more than to see and present it in the strongest manner possible. ~ Edward Weston.

Restricting too personal, and therefore prejudiced, interpretation leads to revolution – the fusion of an inner and outer reality derived from the wholeness of life – sublimating things seen into things known. ~ Edward Weston.

As great a picture can be made as one’s mental capacity-no greater. Art cannot be taught; it must be self-inspiration, though the imagination may be fired and the ambition and work directed by the advice and example of others. ~ Edward Weston.

When a photographer masters the tools and processes of the art, then the quality of the work is only limited by his creative vision. ~ Edward Weston.

My true program is summed up in one word: life. I expect to photograph anything suggested by that word which appeals to me. ~ Edward Weston.

Wise Edward Weston Quotes

A lifetime can well be spent correcting and improving one’s own faults without bothering about others. ~ Edward Weston.


I don’t care if you make a print on a bath mat, just as long as it is a good print. ~ Edward Weston.

To consult the rules of composition before making a picture is a little like consulting the law of gravitation before going for a walk. ~ Edward Weston.

I would say to any artist: Don’t be repressed in your work, dare to experiment, consider any urge, if in a new direction all the better. ~ Edward Weston.

When money enters in – then, for a price, I become a liar – and a good one I can be whether with pencil or subtle lighting or viewpoint. I hate it all, but so do I support not only my family, but my own work. ~ Edward Weston.


Is love like art – something always ahead, never quite attained. ~ Edward Weston.

Photography suits the temper of this age – of active bodies and minds. It is a perfect medium for one whose mind is teeming with ideas, imagery, for a prolific worker who would be slowed down by painting or sculpting, for one who sees quickly and acts decisively, accurately. ~ Edward Weston.

An excellent conception can be quite obscured by faulty technical execution or clarified by faultless technique. ~ Edward Weston.

Thought-Provoking Edward Weston Quotes

The camera should be used for a recording of life, for rendering the very substance and quintessence of the thing itself, whether it be polished steel or palpitating flesh. ~ Edward Weston.

I was extravagant in the matter of cameras – anything photographic – I had to have the best. But that was to further my work. In most things I have gone along with the plainest – or without. ~ Edward Weston.


Good composition is merely the strongest way of seeing. ~ Edward Weston.

People who wouldn’t think of taking a sieve to the well to draw water fail to see the folly in taking a camera to make a painting. ~ Edward Weston.

Photography, not soft gutless painting, is best equipped to bore into the spirit of today. ~ Edward Weston.

It seems so utterly naïve that landscape – not that of the pictorial school – is not considered of social significance” when it has a far more important bearing on the human race of a given locale than excrescences called cities. ~ Edward Weston.

Since the recording process is instantaneous, and the nature of the image such that it cannot survive corrective handwork, it is obvious that the finished print must be created in full before the film is exposed. ~ Edward Weston.

I always work better when I do not reason, when no question of right or wrong enter in, when my pulse quickens to the form before me without hesitation nor calculation. ~ Edward Weston.

So these were the 49 top Edward Weston quotes and sayings.

If you like these quotes and sayings, then you can also read my other posts on Walker Evans quotes and Robert Adams quotes.

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Chandan Negi
Chandan Negi

I’m the Founder of Internet Pillar - I love sharing quotes and motivational content to inspire and motivate people - #quotes #motivation #internetpillar