An amateur is someone who supports himself with outside jobs which enable him to paint. A professional is someone whose wife works to enable him to paint.
The Passion of Sacco and Vanzetti
His every line of writing was art. And yet such art was inseparable from its life content.
Self Portrait among the Churchgoers, 1939
I felt very strongly the whole social impact of that depression, you know, and I felt very strongly about the efforts that this Resettlement Administration was trying to accomplish; resettling people, helping them, and so on.
I remember traveling around in Arkansas with Senator Robinson, and I told him what this little trick was. He felt very much part of it and had me take pictures of people unbeknownst to them.
I was primarily interested in people, and people in action, so that I did nothing photographically in the sense of doing buildings for their own sake or a still life or anything like that.
Some time ago, we went to Asia and took a camera along, and I began to do what I'd done even years ago doing people. I couldn't get interested in it. And I did hundreds of photographs of details of the monuments as sculpture.
When you talk about war on poverty it doesn't mean very much; but if you can show to some degree this sort of thing then you can show a great deal more of how people are living and a very great percentage of our people today.
I was so impressed with the work we were doing and I was very involved ideologically in photography - that I arranged an exhibition at the College Art Association. The first exhibition I picked the photographs and so on and we had an exhibition in New York.
I confess that Roy was a little bit dictatorial in his editing and he ruined quite a number of my pictures, which he stopped doing later. He used to punch a hole through a negative. Some of them were incredibly valuable. He didn't understand at the time.
I did take my camera along, as I felt there wouldn't be enough time to draw the things I wanted to do. I did some drawing and did a lot of photography but I was not part of Stryker's outfit at all.
In '38, this time I did a job for Mr. Stryker. I went on his payroll at about half the salary I was getting before, to cover what he called Harvest in Ohio.
Now, when I came on to Washington to begin my job, I was so interested in photography at that time that I really would have preferred to work with Stryker than with my department, which was more artistic if you wish.
The time when I had desire to go to the United States I didn't have a penny. It was in the middle of the depression, you know. I couldn't get as far as Hoboken at that time.