I don't deliberately look for something dark or bleak or disconnected, in fact that's not something I'm even conscious of in the work as I'm making it. I'm always trying to create beauty, reveal hope, show the sense of longing that exists in isolation and loneliness, and capture the search for something greater inside all of my subjects.— Gregory Crewdson
The most interesting Gregory Crewdson quotes that are little-known but priceless
My pictures must first be beautiful, but that beauty is not enough.
I strive to convey an underlying edge of anxiety, of isolation, of fear.
My pictures are about everyday life combined with theatrical effect.
I want them to feel outside of time, to take something routine and make it irrational. I’m always looking for a small moment that is a revelation
My pictures are about a search for a moment—a perfect moment.
To me the most powerful moment in the whole process is when everything comes together and there is that perfect, beautiful, still moment. And for that instant, my life makes sense.
It's about finding meaning through light.
I'm always interested in tensions. A primary one is the collision between the familiar and the strange.
I really love that dynamic between beauty and sadness.
..theres always these moments of quiet alienation, the sense of disconnect, but also, these moments of possibility.
I’m interested in using the iconography of nature and the American landscape as surrogates or metaphors for psychological anxiety, fear or desire
I have always been fascinated by the poetic condition of twilight.
By its transformative quality. Its power of turning the ordinary into something magical and otherworldly. My wish is for the narrative in the pictures to work within that circumstance. It is that sense of in-between-ness that interests me.
The suburban landscape is alien and strange and exotic.
I photograph it out of longing and desire. My photographs are also about repression and internal angst.
My father was a psycho-analyst and I think that fact was very influential on my development as an artist. Trying to search beneath the surface of things for an unexpected sense of mystery.
The whole reason I make these pictures is for those moments of clarity.
For that single moment, everything seems to make sense in my world. And I think we all look for that in our lives, because our lives are generally filled with chaos and confusion and disorder and complication.
Originally, one of the reasons I was drawn to photography, as opposed to painting or sculpture or installation, is that of all the arts it is the most democratic, in so far as it's instantly readable and accessible to our culture. Photography is how we move information back and forth.
We all strive to find moments of clarity, of order.
If my pictures are about anything at all, I think it's about trying to make a connection in the world. I see them as more optimistic in a certain way. Even though it's very clear there's a level of sadness and disconnection, I think that they're really about trying to make a connection and almost the impossibility of doing so.
I think that's the nature of representation.
No matter what it will disappoint, it will fail in some way.But that's also part of the magic of art. If every picture met my expectation in exactly the right way, there'd be no mystery; there'd be no gap between what's in my head and the picture I make.
Since a photograph is frozen and mute, since there is no before and after, I don't want there to be a conscious awareness of any kind of literal narrative. And that's why I really try not to pump up motivation or plot or anything like that.
There's a parallel between me going through these enormous efforts to try to make a moment that means something - and in a way, the figures are doing the same thing. There is that parallel, for sure.
In "Twilight," the narratives are more literal, and the event is much more spectacular. The pictures in "Beneath the Roses" are much more psychological and grounded in reality.
I was really fixated when I was a child.
Again my mother was just talking to me about this, about how I would how try to get details exactly right. I guess I was always very persistent.
For all the talk of my pictures being narratives or that they're about storytelling, there's really very little actually happening in the pictures. One of the few things I always tell people in my pictures is that I want less - give me something less.
What the artist attempts to do is to try and tell a story.
Attempting to give physical expression to a story that's internal.
I want to privilege the moment.
I never know what to call the subjects in my pictures because I'm uncomfortable with the word actor. I think maybe subjects might be more accurate - or maybe even more accurate is objects.
All my pictures are very voyeuristic, but ultimately I'm looking at what lurks in my own interior. I make photographs because I want to answer the question of what propels me to do the things that I do. But that always remains a mystery.
It is really important to have an obsessive need to construct something, to understand something from your own experience.
You have this ambition to make something perfect, exactly right.
Of course, necessarily, it fails in some way and you have to accept that for what it is, and then you're on to the next thing.
Making that final commitment is really hard.
Because once you decide to move forward, it becomes a whole process which is really hard to stop.
The viewer is more likely to project their own narrative onto the picture.
I'm not that particularly talented in terms of making anything or - I'm not technically efficient. I certainly don't know how to draw very well or paint, and I'm not good with computers. But I think the thing that I'm good at is willing something into life, no matter what. I do what it takes to get it done.
I think maybe the figures - that's a good word - the figures in my pictures are stand-ins for my own need to make a connection.
Usually I'll drive to certain locations over and over again, over a course of months really. And then it might just be I hit it at the right time, and the right light. And then I might go to that location over and over again, and then what happens in that lag time where - the image sort of locks in - all of a sudden I see it in my mind's eye.
What's important to me is that there's a necessary alienation between me and the subject. I don't want to know them well. I don't want to have any intimate contact with them.
I think that, in a sense, there's something about photography in general that we could associate with memory, or the past, or childhood.
I do think that dread is about a certain kind of expectation.
And the fact that a picture can never resolve itself the way a movie can - maybe that's a specific kind of dread that becomes associated with a picture.
I'm very moved by the fact that people are drawn into the pictures and that they do bring their own history and their own interpretation to the photograph. I think that's why they work in a certain way.
My mom just recently reminded me that I used to build these little miniature worlds outside at our country house and populate it with little figures.That whole thing [shooting is] about trying to create a world - there's something very connected to childhood and reverie and daydreaming and fantasy.
Every artist has a central story to tell, and the difficulty, the impossible task, is trying to present that story in pictures
I think my pictures are really about a kind of tension between my need to make a perfect picture and the impossibility of doing so. Something always fails, there's always a problem, and photography fails in a certain sense... This is what drives you to the next picture.