In the first two years of photographing people on the streets of New York City, Brandon Stanton mostly allowed the powerful images to speak for themselves.
But as he devoted more time to interviewing his subjects, hearing their stories delivered an extra emotional wallop.
“A lot of the time, the very first question out of my mouth is: ‘What is your biggest challenge right now?'” said Stanton.
“I find that if you just ask, people are willing to share, because I think there’s a validation of sharing your story”.
Stanton shares his slice-of-life snapshots alongside humorous and heartwrenching anecdotes on his popular blog Humans of New York. He’s amassed a sizable social media following with a combined total of more than 19 million followers on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, and has even inspired imitators of the format in Toronto, Dublin and Mumbai.
In “Humans of New York: Stories” (St. Martin’s Press), Stanton, 31, shares a few of his favourites as well as newer entries from his rapidly expanding catalogue. Whether it’s a brief quote or a longer story, the text adds poignancy and greater insight into the individual before the lens. Read more