- Art is the affirmation of life.
Adams attributed this saying to his great predecessor Alfred Stieglitz
in Playboy, May 1983
- You don't take a photograph, you make it.
- Rape, ruin, and run.
on the policies of Interior Secretary James Watt allowing strip mining and timbering in national parks, in Playboy, May 1983
- You must have certain noble areas of the world left in as close-to-primal condition as possible. You must have quietness and a certain amount of solitude. You must be able to touch the living rock, drink the pure waters, scan the great vistas, sleep under the stars and awaken to the cool dawn wind. Such experiences are the heritage of all people.
Give Nature Time commencement address, Occidental College, June 11, 1967