You know, he (Winogrand) set a tempo on the street so strong that it was impossible not to follow it. It was like jazz. You just had to get in the same groove... You know, if you hesitate, forget it. You don't have to learn to unleash that. It was like having a hair trigger. Sometimes walking down the street, wanting to make a picture, I would be so anticipatory, so anxious, that I would just have to fire the camera, to let fly a picture, in order to release the energy, so that I could recock it. That's what you got from Garry. It came off him in waves - to be keyed up, eager, excited for pictures in that way. - Joel Meyerowitz , Bystander : A History of Street Photography by Colin Westerbeck, Joel Meyerowitz , ISBN: 0821227262
...Photography is a response that has to do with the momentary recognition of things. Suddenly you're alive. A minute later there was nothing there. I just watched it evaporate. You look one moment and there's everything, next moment it's gone. Photography is very philosophical. - Joel Meyerowitz
Sunday Times book of creative photography.
'Tough' meant it was an uncompromising image, something that came from your gut, out of instinct, raw, of the moment, something that couldn’t be described in any other way. So it was tough. Tough to like, tough to see, tough to make, tough to understand. The tougher they were the more beautiful they became. - Joel Meyerowitz
They [photographs] teach you about your own unraveling past, or about the immediacy of yesterday. They show you what you look at. If you take a photograph, you've been responsive to someting, and you looked hard at it. Hard for a thousandth of a second, hard for ten minutes. But hard, nonetheless. And it's the quality of that bite that teaches you how connected you were to that thing, and where you stood in relation to it, then and now. - Joel Meyerowitz , Visions and Images : American Photographers on Photography by Barbaralee Diamonstein , Page: 112
What I think is so extraordinary about the photograph is that we have a piece of paper with this image adhered to it, etched on it, which interposes itself into the plane of time that we are actually in at that moment. Even if it comes from as far back as 150 years ago, or as recently as yesterday, or a minute before as a Polaroid color photograph, suddenly you bring it into your experience. You look at it, and all around the real world is humming, buzzing and moving, and yet in this little frame there is stillness that looks like the world. That connection, that collision, that interfacing, is one of the most astonishing things we can experience. - Joel Meyerowitz
I think about photographs as being full, or empty. You picture something in a frame and it's got lots of accounting going on in it--stones and buildings and trees and air--but that's not what fills up a frame. You fill up the frame with feelings, energy, discovery, and risk, and leave room enough for someone else to get in there. - Joel Meyerowitz
What is the art experience about? Really, I'm not interested in making "Art" at all. I never, ever, think about it. To say the word "Art", it's almost like a curse on art. I do know that I want to try to get closer to myself. The older I get, the more indications I have about what it is to get closer to yourself. You try less hard. I just want to be. - Joel Meyerowitz
A Conversation: Bruce K. Macdonald with Joel Meyerowitz, July 22-26, 1977 (Cape Cod)
Making any statement of your feelings is risky. It's just like making pictures. - Joel Meyerowitz
A Conversation: Bruce K. Macdonald with Joel Meyerowitz, July 22-26, 1977 (Cape Cod)
I find it strangely beautiful that the camera with its inherent clarity of object and detail can produce images that in spite of themselves offer possibilities to be more than they are ... a photograph of nothing very important at all, nothing but an intuition, a response, a twitch from the photographer’s experience. - Joel Meyerowitz , 1000 Photo Icons by Anthony Bannon (Foreword), George Eastman House , ISBN: 3822820970 , Page: 666
[the small camera] taught me energy and decisiveness and immediacy … The large camera taught me reverence, patience, and meditation. - Joel Meyerowitz , 1000 Photo Icons by Anthony Bannon (Foreword), George Eastman House , ISBN: 3822820970 , Page: 666
Photography looks like pictures but it's really ideas, and they're your ideas. - Joel Meyerowitz
I have been asked so many times: "How do you know when to take a photograph?"
And I remember walking through Paris, and just walking down the street and suddenly smell baking croissants on the air, butter and sugar.
and you oh, and you immediately - you want a corssoiante or a cookie or something right? And then you take two steps and it is gone!
So in the air, on the street was this little zone, for a moment, where the fragance was so rich and compelling...
To me, that is what photography is:
you walk along the street and something happens, and you get it
it is a visual that is as precise as that fragance that is only in the air of the doorway.
- Joel Meyerowitz