I first discovered “Humans of New York” on social media. Like many others I kept seeing these pictures appear on my Facebook feed. I even shared a few of them on my own page. I looked forward to seeing what characters would appear next and what their stories would be. I became more and more curious about it and so, as I do with everything I have an interest in I looked it up and began reading all about it. Brandon Stanton began taking pictures in 2010 after he lost his job as a bond trader in Chicago. He didn’t know what to do so he began taking pictures, first of things he saw and then of random people he met on the street. Photography was just something he enjoyed doing and not something he ever saw as a career. This idea has now developed into a worldwide blog with millions of followers called “Humans of New York”.
At first Stanton’s idea was to gather 10,000 portraits, plot them on a map of the city and present them to a publication but the project soon began to grow into something much bigger. He started having conversations with the subjects in his photographs rather than just taking their picture. He asked them personal and intimate questions about their lives and coupled these stories with their pictures. This seemed to be the key that unlocked the magic of “Humans of New York”. Now it has between 13 -15 million followers on its Facebook page and blog. Two books have been released, one of which has been on the best seller list for several months and another due out at the end of the year. “Humans of New York” has also won a Webby for “Best Use of Photography” and a People’s Voice Award for “Best Cultural Blog.” Stanton was also named one of Time Magazine’s 30 Under 30 People Changing The World in 2013.