Diane Arbus- An Aperture Monograph

This photo book came out in 1972, a year after her death. Put together by her daughter and a friend, it contains some of her classic photographs and quotes from recorded interviews. Here are some quotes on photography that stood out: (Explore our 35mm page to discover other photographers we love.)

“Most people go through life dreading they’ll have a traumatic experience. Freaks were born with their trauma.. They’ve already passed their test in life. They’re aristocrats.”

“In the beginning of photographing I used to make very grainy things. I’d be fascinated by what the grain did because it would make a kind of tapestry of all these little dots and everything would be translated into this medium of dots.”

I never have taken a picture I intended. They’re always better or worse.”

“I think the camera is something of a nuisance in a way.It’s recalcitrant. It’s determined to do one thing and you may want to do something else. You have to fuse what you want and what the camera wants.”

“…I don’t like to arrange things. If I stand in front of something, instead of arranging it, I arrange myself.”‘

“…you don’t put into a photograph what’s going to come out. Or vice versa,, what comes out is not what you put in.”

“Sometimes for me composition has to do with a certain brightness or a certain coming to restness and other times it has to do with funny mistakes. There’s a kind of rightness and wrongness and sometimes I like rightness and sometimes I like wrongness. Composition is like that.”