(all about) Saul Leiter quotes + photos

Early Color has been a book that has shaken the photography world, as well as the latter years in the life of Saul Leiter. now in its 6th printing, one can hope it remains in-print forever, and perhaps begin to rival Robert Frank‘s The Americans in terms of influential books. after perusing All About Saul Leiter, from the recent Japanese exhibit, there was some hesitation that a “greatest hits” book on Leiter would be a let down (as other books have been). then, it is also paperback. but… but… it works wonderfully. perhaps, I think, it is the book to get initiated with Leiter. in American terms, “a Christmas stocking stuffer”. I think the range and selection are great, but the little detail I truly love to wrap everything nicely? quotes. the quotes do not directly affect the view of the next photo, but it affects how a humble point of view is also revealed in them.

to break with tradition of these posts, there are some selected quotes that are good to places here.

important:

  • « there is a tremendous advantage to being unimportant »
  • « I didn’t walk around feeling that I was important… I had not spent my life feeling important »
  • « the important thing in life is not what you get but what you throw out »
  • « photographs are often treated as important moments but really they are little fragments and souvenirs of an unfinished world »

clichés:

  • « his lab assistant once remarked in boredom: “not umbrellas again!”
    to which Leiter replied, “I love umbrellas!” »
  • « a window covered with raindrops interests me more than a photograph of a famous place »

seeing:

  • « it is not where it is or what it is that matters, but how you see it »
  • « I take photographs in my neighborhood. I think that mysterious things happen in familiar places. we don’t always need to run to the other end of the world. »
  • « I like it when one is not certain of what one sees. when we do not know why we are looking at it, all of the sudden we discover something that we start seeing. I like this confusion. »

 

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NB: yeah, Miles Davis‘s Bitches Brew was a strange pairing, but once absorbed into the NYC state of mind, it works nicely.

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