Excerpts from an interview with Bill Moyers in 1982.

When I’m photographing, I see life. That’s what I deal with. I don’t have pictures in my head. i frame in terms of what i want to include and naturally, when I want to snap the shutter. And i don’t worry about how the pictures going to look, i let that take care of itself. We know too much about how pictures look and should look. And you do you get around making those pictures again and again. Its one modus operandi, to frame in terms of what you want to have in the picture not about how to make a nice picture. That anybody can do.

-Garry Winogrand

Garry Winogrand, New York City, 1968 © The Estate of Garry Winogrand

Garry Winogrand, New York City, 1968 © The Estate of Garry Winogrand

 

Park Avenue, New York, Garry Winogrand, 1959 © The Estate of Garry Winogrand

Park Avenue, New York, Garry Winogrand, 1959 © The Estate of Garry Winogrand

World's Fair, New York, Garry Winogrand, New York City, 1964  © The Estate of Garry Winogrand

World's Fair, New York, Garry Winogrand, New York City, 1964 © The Estate of Garry Winogrand

 

I’m very subjective in what I photograph. When things move, I get interested, I know that much.

-Garry Winogrand

Peace Demonstration, Central Park, Garry Winogrand, 1970 © The Estate of Garry Winogrand

Peace Demonstration, Central Park, Garry Winogrand, 1970 © The Estate of Garry Winogrand

Austin, Texas, Garry Winogrand, 1974 © The Estate of Garry Winogrand

Austin, Texas, Garry Winogrand, 1974 © The Estate of Garry Winogrand

 

To make a photo more theatrical than the subject’s own theatricality is a hell of a problem.

-Garry Winogrand

© The Estate of Garry Winogrand

© The Estate of Garry Winogrand

Salt Lake City Municipal Airport, Utah, Garry Winogrand, Salt Lake City, 1964 © The Estate of Garry Winogrand

Salt Lake City Municipal Airport, Utah, Garry Winogrand, Salt Lake City, 1964 © The Estate of Garry Winogrand

Garry Winogrand, New York City, 1968 © The Estate of Garry Winogrand

Garry Winogrand, New York City, 1968 © The Estate of Garry Winogrand

 

I don’t have to have any storytelling responsibility to what I’m photographing. I have a responsibility to describe well. In fact, my photographs are mute, they don’t have any narrative ability at all. A piece of time and space is well described but not what is happening…[photographs] do not tell stories, they show you what something looks like to a camera.

-Garry Winogrand

Minneapolis, Garry Winogrand © The Estate of Garry Winogrand

Minneapolis, Garry Winogrand © The Estate of Garry Winogrand

 

The nature of the photographic process, it is about failure. Most everything I do doesn’t quite make it. the failures can be intelligent. Nothing ventured, nothing gained. Hpefully, you’re risking failing every time you make a frame.

-Garry Winogrand

eace Demonstration, Garry Winogrand, 1969 © The Estate of Garry Winogrand

eace Demonstration, Garry Winogrand, 1969 © The Estate of Garry Winogrand

 

I get into situations where there’s a lot of activity, more things can occur to me to try in those circumstances. Really, that’s what it’s all about.

-Garry Winogrand

Three Women, New York City, Garry Winogrand, 1969 © The Estate of Garry Winogrand

Three Women, New York City, Garry Winogrand, 1969 © The Estate of Garry Winogrand

Statue of Liberty Ferry, New York, Garry Winogrand, 1971 © The Estate of Garry Winogrand

Statue of Liberty Ferry, New York, Garry Winogrand, 1971 © The Estate of Garry Winogrand

 

It always fascinates me – it bolloxes my mind, I mean, when people talk about photographs in depth, and what not, you know, when all a photograph does is describe light on surface. That’s all there is. And that’s all we ever know about anybody. You know, what we see. I mean, I think we are our faces and whatever, you know? That’s all there is, is light on surface.

-Garry Winogrand

Untitled, 3 figures, Garry Winogrand, 1960 © The Estate of Garry Winogrand

Untitled, 3 figures, Garry Winogrand, 1960 © The Estate of Garry Winogrand

 

I am surprised that my prints sell. They’re not pretty, they’re not those kind of pictures that people easily put on their walls, they’re not that window onto a nice landscape or something. They aren’t.

-Garry Winogrand

Street Beggar Reaching Out to Receive a Donation, Garry Winogrand, 1968 © The Estate of Garry Winogrand

Street Beggar Reaching Out to Receive a Donation, Garry Winogrand, 1968 © The Estate of Garry Winogrand

 

I don’t have pictures in my head, you know. Look, I am stuck with my own psychology. With my own, uh, with me. So I’m sure that there’s some kind of thread, whatever, but I don’t have pictures in my head.

-Garry Winogrand

Central Park Zoo, Garry Winogrand, New York, 1967 © The Estate of Garry Winogrand

Central Park Zoo, Garry Winogrand, New York, 1967 © The Estate of Garry Winogrand

 

I don’t lay myself down on the couch to figure out why I’m a photographer and not this or that. Whatever it is, I can’t seem to do enough of it. It’s a pleasure.

-Garry Winogrand

New Mexico, Garry Winogrand, 1957 © The Estate of Garry Winogrand

New Mexico, Garry Winogrand, 1957 © The Estate of Garry Winogrand