August 25th, 2014
Dorothea Lange
Quotes by Dorothea Lange
“American Masters – Dorothea Lange: Grab a Hunk of Lightning” filmmaker and narrator Dyanna Taylor (left) with her grandmother Dorothea Lange, 1963. Photo: Paul S. Taylor

“American Masters – Dorothea Lange: Grab a Hunk of Lightning” filmmaker and narrator Dyanna Taylor (left) with her grandmother Dorothea Lange, 1963. Photo: Paul S. Taylor

10 Things to Learn About Photography and Life from Dorothea Lange

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

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

3. “That frame of mind that you need to make fine pictures of a very wonderful subject, you cannot do it by not being lost yourself.” – Dorothea Lange

4. “Pick a theme and work it to exhaustion… the subject must be something you truly love or truly hate.” – Dorothea Lange

5. “It is not enough to photograph the obviously picturesque.” – Dorothea Lange

Dorothea Lange in her Bay Area home studio, 1964. Photo: ©1964, 2014 Rondal Partridge Archives

Dorothea Lange in her Bay Area home studio, 1964. Photo: ©1964, 2014 Rondal Partridge Archives

 
6. “A documentary photograph is not a factual photograph.” – Dorothea Lange

7. “To know ahead of time what you’re looking for means you’re then only photographing your own preconceptions, which is very limiting, and often false.” – Dorothea Lange

8. “While there is perhaps a province in which the photograph can tell us nothing more than what we see with our own eyes, there is another in which it proves to us how little our eyes permit us to see.” – Dorothea Lange

Dorothea Lange preparing for her one-woman career retrospective at New York’s Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in her home studio, Berkeley, CA, 1964. Photo: ©1964, 2014 Rondal Partridge Archives

Dorothea Lange preparing for her one-woman career retrospective at New York’s Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in her home studio, Berkeley, CA, 1964. Photo: ©1964, 2014 Rondal Partridge Archives


 
9. “Seeing is more than a physiological phenomenon… We see not only with our eyes but with all that we are and all that our culture is. The artist is a professional see-er.” – Dorothea Lange

10. “One should really use the camera as though tomorrow you’d be stricken blind.” – Dorothea Lange
 

“On the Beach at Steep Ravine 2.” Dorothea Lange, circa 1961. Photo: © 1961, 2014 Rondal Partridge Archives

“On the Beach at Steep Ravine 2.” Dorothea Lange, circa 1961. Photo: © 1961, 2014 Rondal Partridge Archives

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