Famous Quotes & Sayings

Duane Michals Quotes & Sayings

Enjoy the top 61 famous quotes, sayings and quotations by Duane Michals.

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Duane Michals Quotes 637879

I've done a lot of commercial work. I'm the complete photographer. — Duane Michals

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Even in the deepest love relationship - when lovers say 'I love you' to each other - we don't really know what we're saying, because language isn't equal to the complexity of human emotions. — Duane Michals

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If I indulge myself and surrender to memory, I can still feel the knot of excitement that gripped me as I turned the corner into Rue Mimosas, looking for the house of Rene Magritte. It was August, 1965. I was 33 years old and about to meet the man whose profound and witty surrealist paintings had contradicted my assumptions about photography. — Duane Michals

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I never photograph sunsets and I never photograph moonrises. I'm not interested in what things look like. — Duane Michals

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Most portraits are lies. People are rarely what they appear to be, especially in front of a camera. You might know me your entire lifetime and never reveal yourself to me. To interpret wrinkles as character is insult not insight. — Duane Michals

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You can't teach art, so ART SCHOOL is a contradiction in terms. — Duane Michals

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Flowers construct the most charming geometries: circles like the sun, ovals, cones, curlicues and a variety of triangular eccentricities, which when viewed with the eye of a magnifying glass seem a Lilliputian frieze of psychedelic silhouettes. — Duane Michals

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I never went to a photography school, which was my saving grace, — Duane Michals

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I'm very hard on the art world just being a big business. — Duane Michals

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I often try to photograph things about a person that are not visible. — Duane Michals

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Usually when painters use photographs, they enlarge and copy them and simply make a large, boring painting of a large, boring photograph. — Duane Michals

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Photography does deal with 'truth' or a kind of superficial reality better than any of the other arts, but it never questions the nature of reality - it simply reproduces reality. And what good is that when the things of real value in life are invisible? — Duane Michals

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I already know what things look like - I don't want description. People believe in appearances, and I don't believe in appearances at all. — Duane Michals

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In the West, people tend to look at life as spectators, but in the East, people are the thing. — Duane Michals

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It is no accident that you are reading this. I am making black marks on white paper. These marks are my thoughts, and although I do not know who you are reading this ... the lines of our lives have intersected. For the length of these few sentences, we meet here.

It is no accident that you are reading this. This moment has been waiting for you, I have been waiting for you. Remember me. — Duane Michals

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If I was concerned about being accepted, I would have been doing Ansel Adams lookalikes, because that was easily accepted. Everything I did was never accepted ... but luckily for me, my interest in the subject and my passion for the subject took me to the point that I wasn't wounded by that, and eventually, people came around to me. — Duane Michals

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I don't get straight people, but I understand what they look like. — Duane Michals

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Trust that little voice in your head that says 'Wouldn't it be interesting if ... '; And then do it. — Duane Michals

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Photography deals exquisitely with appearances, but nothing is what it appears to be. — Duane Michals

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All good children's books, I think, address metaphysical issues in some kind of way. — Duane Michals

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To fulfil a fantasy is the quickest way to destroy it. — Duane Michals

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I believe in the imagination. What I cannot see is infinitely more important than what I can see — Duane Michals

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Taking photographs and writing is my way of saying I was here, I saw this, I felt this, I heard this. — Duane Michals

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I think photographs should be provocative and not tell you what you already know. It takes no great powers or magic to reproduce somebody's face in a photograph. The magic is in seeing people in new ways. — Duane Michals

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Photography is very presumptuous. Photographers are always photographing other people's lives - something they know nothing about - and drawing great inferences into it. — Duane Michals

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To photograph reality is to photograph nothing. — Duane Michals

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I am an expressionist and by that I mean that I'm not a photographer or a writer or a painter or a tap dancer, but rather someone who expresses himself according to his needs. — Duane Michals

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Art has to address eternal issues. — Duane Michals

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Photographers usually want to photograph facts and things. But I'm interested in the nature of the thing itself. A photograph of someone sleeping tells me nothing about their dream state; a photograph of a corpse tells me nothing about the nature of death. My work is about my life as an event, and I find myself to be very temporal, transient. — Duane Michals

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There are those photographers who have made a whole career doing commercial work but have never had a museum show, and then there are others who've only had museum shows but couldn't survive for five seconds in the real world of photography. But I've done absolutely everything. — Duane Michals

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I got a lot of flak originally for writing with photographs, because the great cliche in photography is that one photograph is worth a thousand words, and photographers are usually dodo birds anyway. — Duane Michals

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I write in order to express what the photo itself cannot say. A photograph of my father doesn't tell me what I thought of him, which for me is much more important than what the man looked like. — Duane Michals

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Photographers tend not to photograph what they can't see, which is the very reason one should try to attempt it. Otherwise we're going to go on forever just photographing more faces and more rooms and more places. Photography has to transcend description. It has to go beyond description to bring insight into the subject, or reveal the subject, not as it looks, but how does it feel? — Duane Michals

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I still find doing portraits a terrific challenge, but even though I've done hundreds of them, I've never stopped questioning the very nature of portraiture because it deals exclusively with appearances. I've never believed people are what they look like and think it's impossible to really know what people are. — Duane Michals

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And in not learning the rules, I was free. I always say, you're either defined by the medium or you redefine the medium in terms of your needs. — Duane Michals

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The only thing I know anything about are my own fantasies and anxieties. I don't trust my eyes. I consider myself to be a short-story writer. — Duane Michals

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Photography is essentially an act of recognition by street photographers, not an act of invention. Photographers might respond to an old man's face, or an Arbus freak, or the way light hits a building - and then they move on. Whereas in all the other art forms, take William Blake, everything that came to that paper never existed before. It's the idea of alchemy, of making something from nothing. — Duane Michals

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I think photographers are too polite. There is not enough anger in photography; it's pretty much trivialized. — Duane Michals

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Don't try to be an artist. Find the thing within you that needs to be expressed. You might find it is art. — Duane Michals

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A lot of photographers walk around looking for something 'out there,' but I'm very much interested in what's 'in here.' — Duane Michals

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I believe in the invisible. I do not believe in the definitive reality of things around us. For me, reality is the intuition and the imagination and the quiet voice inside my head that says: isn't that extraordinary? The things in our lives are the shadows of reality, just as we ourselves are shadows. — Duane Michals

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If you look at a photograph, and you think, 'My isn't that a beautiful photograph,' and you go on to the next one, or 'Isn't that nice light?' so what? I mean what does it do to you or what's the real value in the long run? What do you walk away from it with? I mean, I'd much rather show you a photograph that makes demands on you, that you might become involved in on your own terms or be perplexed by. — Duane Michals

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A photograph of a woman crying tells me nothing about grief. Or a photograph of a woman ecstatic tells me nothing about ecstasy. What is the nature of these emotions? The problem with photography is that it only deals with appearances. — Duane Michals

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Art is really whispering, not shouting. — Duane Michals

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You can't see fear or lust; you can't photograph someone's anxieties, how disappointment feels. Photographs are approximations. — Duane Michals

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I am interested in the nature of things. The nature of something is quite different from the way it looks. — Duane Michals

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Most photographs, to me, are description, but they lack insight. — Duane Michals

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You can never capture a person in picture, never. You might get an interesting expression or gesture. I almost never research a picture subject ahead of time. I think Karsh is full of baloney. Can you imagine spending a whole week out in La Jolla with Jonas Salk soaking up his ambiance, then wind up making him look as if he's in the studio in Ottawa with his thumb under his chin? — Duane Michals

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I'm a terrible punster. And I love to rhyme. I just can't help myself. — Duane Michals

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One of the marvelous things about film is that if you expose it long enough you're going to get a picture. — Duane Michals

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I think that the photographer must completely control his picture and bring to it all his personality, and in this area most photographs never transcend being just snapshots. When a great photographer does infuse the snapshot with his personality and vision, it can be transformed into something truly moving and beautiful. — Duane Michals

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People of my generation who became photographers in the late fifties, early sixties, there were no rewards in photography. There were no museum shows. Maybe MOMA would show something, or Chicago. There were no galleries. Nobody bought photographs. — Duane Michals

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Then all at once in late August's heat, tall leafless stalks crowned with iridescent pink and purple blossoms burst from the purgatory in the earth. This arcane act of nature, though perceived by us as ordinary, is a manifestation of Maya's phantom play, the great immensity expressed in every way. My garden is the universe. I am the universe. I am my garden. All things are the same. — Duane Michals

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We have a way of making the most extraordinary experience ordinary.
We actually work at destroying our miracles ... — Duane Michals

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All good work has magic in it, and addresses the mind in a subtle way. — Duane Michals

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Taking the photograph is the easiest part for me — Duane Michals

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We live in a culture where the one who shouts the loudest gets the most attention. It's not in the vulgar, it's not in the shock that one finds art. And it's not the excessively beautiful. It's in between; it's in nuance. — Duane Michals

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The majority of photographers focus on the obvious. They believe and accept what their eyes tell them, and yet eyes know nothing. — Duane Michals

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Art is not fashionable. That's why fashion and art are two different things. Fashion can never be art because fashion deals with whim, what is temporary, what changes, what is transient, what is now and not now. Art has to deal with issues that are timeless, that never change. — Duane Michals

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I believe in invisible; I do not believe in visible. — Duane Michals

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The question of truth is forever in the air, and people look for it with particular fervor in art. — Duane Michals