Bill Brandt is one my greatest inspirations. I love his landscapes, portraits and even the nudes (not a big fan of the genre, but the way he did it was just genius).
I think what I like the most about him is his approach to photography. For him, it was all about creating something with the medium, avoiding silly self-imposed rules.
He died in 1983, 5 years before Photoshop was created. That didn't stop him from completely changing his images in the darkroom. Actually, he admittedly did most of his work in the darkroom.
The image of the seagull is a good example. He added the bird afterwards, and the morning Sun years later.
He was brilliant, and we'd be wise to follow his advice to experiment and try everything.
PS: If you want to know more about Bill Brandt, I strongly recommend watching this interview from 1983 for BBC's Master Photographers.