One very important difference between color and monochromatic photography is this: in black and white you suggest; in color you state. Much can be implied by suggestion, but statement demands certainty… absolute certainty.
The advantages of photographing the nude are few because nudes have very little, in fact practically no commercial value. The disadvantages are many because it is the most difficult thing to do from every point of view.
Art is life seen through man’s inner craving for perfection and beauty—his escape from the sordid realities of life into a world of his imagining. Art accounts for at least a third of our civilization, and it is one of the artist’s principal duties to do more than merely record life or nature. To the artist is given the privilege of pointing the way and inspiring towards a better life.
[A photograph] should do something to the beholder; either give a more complete appreciation of beauty, or, if nothing else, even a good mental kick in the pants.
If exposure of a nude body is thought to incite relations between the sexes, well, what of it. We want a large population anyway.
I had a growing feeling that most of the best art of the world in painting and sculpture had been done, and that this newest form [photography] was more related to the progress and tempo of modern science of the eye.
The business of the state trying to legislate modesty is relatively both an infantile and ridiculous procedure. Of course, it is true that the more things are secreted the more intriguing they become, because it is always the forbidden that has the strongest appeal. Nudity is a state of fact—lewdity a state of mind.
Still life subjects will often reflect a clearer picture of a photographic artist’s imaginative vision than landscape work, which is usually more dependent on the choice of a point of view than open anything else; or portraiture, in which the photographer must somewhat subordinate his own personality to that of his sitter.