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"...I’ve met some amazing people along the way."
April 29, 2012 8:22 PM   Subscribe

"What we're going to do is have a map of the city of New York, where you can click on any neighborhood and scroll through the faces of the people that live there."
Photographer Brandon Stanton has now compiled more than 3700 street portraits and 50 stories for his project Humans of New York. Photos are also posted with captions to a public Facebook group. (Album.) The Map currently shows 1500+ portraits, arranged by the location in which they were taken. Previously on MeFi

Video: Behind the Portraits / Best of Humans of New York.
posted by zarq (17 comments total) 9 users marked this as a favorite

 
If you just want to see the photos, the Facebook Album link is the way to go.
posted by zarq at 8:29 PM on April 29, 2012


"... a map of the city of New York, where you can click on any neighborhood and scroll through the faces of the people that live there."

You know, if this was a government project it would be utterly terrifying.
posted by Joe in Australia at 9:16 PM on April 29, 2012 [10 favorites]


Is this one of those things I'd have to live in Manhattan to understand?

</obligatory but true>
posted by zvs at 9:59 PM on April 29, 2012


I'm just grateful that the scrolling is vertical. I saw photographer and scroll in the same FPP and figured it would be horizontal or diagonal or whatever.

Also, wasn't this a Seinfeld episode?
posted by barnacles at 10:38 PM on April 29, 2012


NYC metro has a population of 18,897,000? And he's managed to collect 1500 so far? I think he's got a really loooong project ahead of him!
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 10:51 PM on April 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


He'll need to add some kind of genealogical linkages, because by the time he gets to the other 99.999992%, these first portrayals will be ancestral.
posted by StickyCarpet at 5:48 AM on April 30, 2012


This will be a great way for people who live in New York to remind others that they live in New York.
posted by Mayor Curley at 5:51 AM on April 30, 2012 [2 favorites]


He could stand to leave Manhattan (these days the least interesting borough) more often.
posted by jonmc at 6:02 AM on April 30, 2012


Joe in Australia: ""... a map of the city of New York, where you can click on any neighborhood and scroll through the faces of the people that live there."

You know, if this was a government project it would be utterly terrifying.
"

Thank god it's only on Facebook then!
posted by symbioid at 6:31 AM on April 30, 2012 [2 favorites]


I love this.
posted by imjustsaying at 6:50 AM on April 30, 2012


He's got an eye, and many of these are not "portraits" so much as, dunno, humans as props - not to take anything away from them; those are some of the best.
posted by IAmBroom at 7:06 AM on April 30, 2012


The photos are fine, it's just that some of the captions are leaving a bad taste in my mouth. It's a shame since there are some photos I really like.

It appears he does ask his subjects some questions but other captions appear to be pulled out of his butt. I'm thinking of "And to think he wanted a son," where an Asian guy is biking his daughter around. Sweet photo, but no indication of whether this caption can actually be attributed to what the subject said or not. Since everyone stereotypes all Asians as people who'll abort female fetuses at the drop of the hat, I'm perturbed. The Facebook comments are depressing, with most people replying along the lines that acknowledging race is in itself racist.

Another one is "This is how a hunter looks when he's posing with a trophy deer." Don't need to further the concept that women are just objects or anything, especially with teens. I'm sure the girl feels really flattered with this comparison to game as well. The sweetness of a young relationship is kind of ruined by what the photographer is projecting.
posted by mlo at 7:23 AM on April 30, 2012 [2 favorites]


Yeah, by the time this goes up, half these people will have burned out and moved to another city.
posted by lumpenprole at 7:54 AM on April 30, 2012


It appears he does ask his subjects some questions but other captions appear to be pulled out of his butt. I'm thinking of "And to think he wanted a son," where an Asian guy is biking his daughter around.

I agree that this caption would be offensive if it is just "pulled out of his butt" but do you have any evidence that it is? I mean, lots of people, of all ethnicities, hope for a child of a particular gender. I can easily imagine that this guy would have said "you know, I really wanted a son before she was born, but now I can't imagine loving anyone more than I love my daughter." You might be looking for racism where there's really just the normal vagaries of the human heart.

As for the deer trophy ne, that seems to me entirely a comment on the guy's pose (which is exactly like the hunter posing with a trophy) and not to have any reference to the girl at all. It's not as if she's some stereotypical teen's idea of a "trophy" girlfriend (by which I mean she seems way cooler and funkier than that).

Anyway, perhaps its best to hold off on crying Racism! and Sexism! until there's a little more evidence on the table?
posted by yoink at 9:33 AM on April 30, 2012


Even then, yoink, I'd side with mlo to say: the photos should stand on their own; the cheesy titles cheapen them.

I think that about a lot of art, though: if the piece has a "Zing! Gotcha!" title, I have to wonder if the piece is actually strong enough to stand on its own.

Context can add a lot of meaning, to be sure, but that's not what we're getting; we're getting one-liners and soundbites, in a medium supposedly worth kilowords.
posted by IAmBroom at 1:56 PM on April 30, 2012


This doesn't seem a very representative selection, especially for the West Village and Chelsea. I can't see anyone with the trademark Manhattan Silly Little Dog, let alone SLD in a shoulder bag or in a buggy...

But the guy with the white beard and beret in the middle of the main page... ah, that's me in 10 years time, no doubt about it :-)
posted by 43rdAnd9th at 6:14 PM on April 30, 2012


I like the concept and a lot of the photos, but yeah...the captions need work; "This is how a hunter looks when he’s posing with a trophy deer." Yuck.

> He never said a word, so he’ll forever remain – The Most Mysterious Man In The World.

A number of years ago I was on the westbound College streetcar in Toronto on a Saturday night. At Yonge St. a gentleman and two ladies got on. He was about the same age as the man in that photo, wearing an expensive-looking suit with a folded handkerchief and a scarf, while the women were just a bit younger and decked out in dignified cocktail dresses. Not the typical streetcar crowd, is what I'm saying. I'm not sure I've ever seen anyone happier to be anywhere than those three were. For several blocks they chatted amiably about art and music and restaurants and when we pulled up to the corner of College and Spadina he glanced over at Plaza Flamingo, saw the dancers, grinned and said "Ah, flamenco! My most FAVOURITE dance!"

This was before those Dos Equis commercials, but boy did I ever want to ditch the party I was on my way to and hang out with the Most Interesting Man and Women In The World.
posted by The Card Cheat at 3:44 PM on May 2, 2012


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