Humans of New York: A Photographic Census of New York City

"I perform in angle grinder shows." "What are those?" "I put on a metal outfit, then I grind the metal off it so that sparks shoot everywhere. Most of the time there are naked chicks involved."
“I perform in angle grinder shows.” “What are those?” “I put on a metal outfit, then I grind the metal off it so that sparks shoot everywhere. Most of the time there are naked chicks involved.”

Photographer Brandon Stanton realized that it would be good idea to create an exhaustive catalog of the city’s inhabitants. These portraits and captions became the subject of a popular blog, which has gained a large daily following. Here the selection of the most interesting images.

"What was the happiest moment of your life?" "I don't know." "What was the saddest moment of your life?" "I don't know." "What's your best quality?" "I don't know." "What's your worst quality?" "Indecisiveness."
“What was the happiest moment of your life?” “I don’t know.” “What was the saddest moment of your life?” “I don’t know.” “What’s your best quality?” “I don’t know.” “What’s your worst quality?” “Indecisiveness.”
"The Russians run an underground fighting league in Coney Island where they pay junkies to fight. I fought about fifty fights for them. They pay you $200 win or lose. They'd always make sure I was real doped up before the fight. I mean they weren't good people but it did make me feel kinda important to have all those gangsters cheering for me. And they'd always be really happy if I won, because that meant I'd made them money."
“The Russians run an underground fighting league in Coney Island where they pay junkies to fight. I fought about fifty fights for them. They pay you $200 win or lose. They’d always make sure I was real doped up before the fight. I mean they weren’t good people but it did make me feel kinda important to have all those gangsters cheering for me. And they’d always be really happy if I won, because that meant I’d made them money.”
"My daughter lives in Pennsylvania. She's working at a nursing home and studying to be an accountant. She's my pride and joy." "Does she know you're homeless?" "No, she's got enough to worry about. I just tell her that I'm retired."
“My daughter lives in Pennsylvania. She’s working at a nursing home and studying to be an accountant. She’s my pride and joy.” “Does she know you’re homeless?” “No, she’s got enough to worry about. I just tell her that I’m retired.”
"Facebook is telling me that everyone has a house, a kid, and a dog. So I'm just trying to calm the fuck down."
“Facebook is telling me that everyone has a house, a kid, and a dog. So I’m just trying to calm the fuck down.”
"I told her that if she wanted to start over, to meet where we first kissed. She was supposed to be here 15 minutes ago."
“I told her that if she wanted to start over, to meet where we first kissed. She was supposed to be here 15 minutes ago.”
"One time I was in Saks Fifth Avenue, and I got in an elevator. There was a woman already in there. She had selected the seventh floor, but when I got in with her, she changed it to the second floor." "How'd that make you feel?" "Like I didn't belong."
“One time I was in Saks Fifth Avenue, and I got in an elevator. There was a woman already in there. She had selected the seventh floor, but when I got in with her, she changed it to the second floor.” “How’d that make you feel?” “Like I didn’t belong.”
"Where are you from?" "Russia. If you see a doctor smoking, he's from Russia."
“Where are you from?” “Russia. If you see a doctor smoking, he’s from Russia.”
"I was afraid that I wouldn't have the tolerance to be a parent. But it's amazing how you find the energy."
“I was afraid that I wouldn’t have the tolerance to be a parent. But it’s amazing how you find the energy.”
I was engaged eight years ago, but my fiancee died in Iraq. After that, I promised myself that I'd never be that dependent on someone again. So after I met my husband, I fought marriage for the longest time. But we got married in September. And even though I was rebelling against it, and I always saw it as a meaningless formality, I've been surprised. There's a comfort in knowing that you're sworn to someone else."
I was engaged eight years ago, but my fiancee died in Iraq. After that, I promised myself that I’d never be that dependent on someone again. So after I met my husband, I fought marriage for the longest time. But we got married in September. And even though I was rebelling against it, and I always saw it as a meaningless formality, I’ve been surprised. There’s a comfort in knowing that you’re sworn to someone else.”
"I've never used a cellphone or computer."
“I’ve never used a cellphone or computer.”
"What's the meanest thing anyone's ever said to you?" "Die of AIDS, you cocksucker."
“What’s the meanest thing anyone’s ever said to you?” “Die of AIDS, you cocksucker.”
"Before it was all about us. Now it's all about him."
“Before it was all about us. Now it’s all about him.”
There was a drunk man on the train that everyone was trying to ignore. She saw that he was holding an inhaler, and offered him her seat.
There was a drunk man on the train that everyone was trying to ignore. She saw that he was holding an inhaler, and offered him her seat.
"Every country is good for different reasons. They are like different fruits. But Egypt is my favorite. Egypt is like a mango."
“Every country is good for different reasons. They are like different fruits. But Egypt is my favorite. Egypt is like a mango.”
"I worked hard, I was honest, I provided for my family, and I took care of my parents."
“I worked hard, I was honest, I provided for my family, and I took care of my parents.”
I sat by that stroller and called out her name for three minutes: "Julia, Julia, Juuulllliiiiiiaa." But she wouldn't emerge. Finally this happened.
I sat by that stroller and called out her name for three minutes: “Julia, Julia, Juuulllliiiiiiaa.” But she wouldn’t emerge. Finally this happened.
"You get one picture, then I'm going about my business."
“You get one picture, then I’m going about my business.”
"Do you remember the hardest you've ever laughed?" "Yes, but it's stupid and simple." "What was it?" "My sisters and I were dancing around the living room in our socks, and I tried to do a kick, but ended up throwing my legs out from under me and landing on my butt."
“Do you remember the hardest you’ve ever laughed?” “Yes, but it’s stupid and simple.” “What was it?” “My sisters and I were dancing around the living room in our socks, and I tried to do a kick, but ended up throwing my legs out from under me and landing on my butt.”
One of them pointed at a passing rollerblader and said: "Why don't you photograph him instead?" Another one answered for me: "Because he's not a Hasid with a chihuahua."
One of them pointed at a passing rollerblader and said: “Why don’t you photograph him instead?” Another one answered for me: “Because he’s not a Hasid with a chihuahua.”
"Can you take my photo? I have Asian parents that need confirmation I'm working."
“Can you take my photo? I have Asian parents that need confirmation I’m working.”
"If you could give one piece of advice to a large group of people, what would it be?" "Don't believe in anything." "What's the last belief you held?" "That I could believe in something."
“If you could give one piece of advice to a large group of people, what would it be?” “Don’t believe in anything.” “What’s the last belief you held?” “That I could believe in something.”
"Pounce?" "It’s to remind me to be more aggressive."
“Pounce?” “It’s to remind me to be more aggressive.”
"The toughest part of the job is witnessing the personal tragedies of the people we're trying to help." "What's the toughest scene you've ever witnessed?" "We got to the scene of a car accident one time. A father had rolled his car over two embankments, with his wife and two kids in the car. The wife and one of the children had been crushed to death. I'll never forget the father clawing at that car, trying to get them out."
“The toughest part of the job is witnessing the personal tragedies of the people we’re trying to help.” “What’s the toughest scene you’ve ever witnessed?” “We got to the scene of a car accident one time. A father had rolled his car over two embankments, with his wife and two kids in the car. The wife and one of the children had been crushed to death. I’ll never forget the father clawing at that car, trying to get them out.”
"It's kinda weird having a child of my own, because I'm seeing all the things that my father missed."
“It’s kinda weird having a child of my own, because I’m seeing all the things that my father missed.”
"I've got a whole stack of books in my cart. Most of them are advance copies. I know a place where they get thrown out." "How many books have you read?" "Thousands." "So why are you homeless?" "I've tried to work a job a bunch of times. But then I get sad, and then I get high, and things fall apart."
“I’ve got a whole stack of books in my cart. Most of them are advance copies. I know a place where they get thrown out.” “How many books have you read?” “Thousands.” “So why are you homeless?” “I’ve tried to work a job a bunch of times. But then I get sad, and then I get high, and things fall apart.”
"What do you want to be when you grow up?" "Fireman." "Why do you want to be a fireman?" "I said Ironman!"
“What do you want to be when you grow up?” “Fireman.” “Why do you want to be a fireman?” “I said Ironman!”
"Don't try to be someone else's beautiful."
“Don’t try to be someone else’s beautiful.”
"Two of my friends committed suicide in a four month span. So I packed my bags and moved to the city, where I ran out of money, then got hit by a bus. Sometimes God slows you down. Sometimes he pumps the brakes."
“Two of my friends committed suicide in a four month span. So I packed my bags and moved to the city, where I ran out of money, then got hit by a bus. Sometimes God slows you down. Sometimes he pumps the brakes.”
He said: "Do what makes you happy." I said: "And what makes you happy?" He said nothing, but patted his son on the back.
He said: “Do what makes you happy.” I said: “And what makes you happy?” He said nothing, but patted his son on the back.
"I'm a jaded, cynical journalist." "What's the most shocking thing you've ever seen?" "Probably a roadside bomb. I wasn't actually there, but I pulled up during the aftermath, and there were limbs lying in the road." "Have you ever cried on the job?" "The things that tend to get me are the smaller moments of human connection. I remember one time in India, I saw a legless child being handed off between his father and mother. It was simple but that really moved me. Ever since I had a child of my own, I've been really vulnerable to displays of parental love."
“I’m a jaded, cynical journalist.” “What’s the most shocking thing you’ve ever seen?” “Probably a roadside bomb. I wasn’t actually there, but I pulled up during the aftermath, and there were limbs lying in the road.” “Have you ever cried on the job?” “The things that tend to get me are the smaller moments of human connection. I remember one time in India, I saw a legless child being handed off between his father and mother. It was simple but that really moved me. Ever since I had a child of my own, I’ve been really vulnerable to displays of parental love.”
"Who's had the biggest influence on your life?" "Probably my mother." "What's her best quality?" "She's a very strong woman. She plays the role of my mother and my father." "Where's your father?" "Oh, he's there."
“Who’s had the biggest influence on your life?” “Probably my mother.” “What’s her best quality?” “She’s a very strong woman. She plays the role of my mother and my father.” “Where’s your father?” “Oh, he’s there.”
"If you could give one piece of advice to a large group of people, what would it be?" "Try your best to deal with life without medicating yourself." "You mean drugs?" "I mean drugs, food, shopping, money, whatever. I ain't judging anybody, either. I was hooked on heroin for years. But now I've learned that every feeling will pass if you give it time. And if you learn to deal with your feelings, they'll pass by faster each time. So don't rush to cover them up, or you're never gonna learn."
“If you could give one piece of advice to a large group of people, what would it be?” “Try your best to deal with life without medicating yourself.” “You mean drugs?” “I mean drugs, food, shopping, money, whatever. I ain’t judging anybody, either. I was hooked on heroin for years. But now I’ve learned that every feeling will pass if you give it time. And if you learn to deal with your feelings, they’ll pass by faster each time. So don’t rush to cover them up, or you’re never gonna learn.”
I asked if he remembered the moment he was proudest of his daughter. He started musing in a thick Jamaican accent: "Just seeing her born. That moment when my seed was brought forth on to this earth. It was magic." Then the girl, who up to this point had been quiet, screamed: "Preach!"
I asked if he remembered the moment he was proudest of his daughter. He started musing in a thick Jamaican accent: “Just seeing her born. That moment when my seed was brought forth on to this earth. It was magic.” Then the girl, who up to this point had been quiet, screamed: “Preach!”
"It is important to maintain your equanimity. You cannot let yourself get too 'up' or too 'down' based on your circumstances." "Too 'down' I understand. But why not too 'up?'" "Because the higher your mountains are, the deeper your valleys will seem. You should not react to the world. You should respond, but not react. A response is an action based on logic. A reaction is an emotional state. Your reaction will not change the world. Your reaction only changes you. Your response will change the world."
“It is important to maintain your equanimity. You cannot let yourself get too ‘up’ or too ‘down’ based on your circumstances.” “Too ‘down’ I understand. But why not too ‘up?'” “Because the higher your mountains are, the deeper your valleys will seem. You should not react to the world. You should respond, but not react. A response is an action based on logic. A reaction is an emotional state. Your reaction will not change the world. Your reaction only changes you. Your response will change the world.”
"All the women in Pakistan are very covered up. I came to America for the first time on September 4th, so it was still very warm outside. I stepped into the terminal at JFK, took a look around, and said: 'Oh. My. God.'"
“All the women in Pakistan are very covered up. I came to America for the first time on September 4th, so it was still very warm outside. I stepped into the terminal at JFK, took a look around, and said: ‘Oh. My. God.'”
"We go to four appointments every week, but I don't mind. She's my blood."
“We go to four appointments every week, but I don’t mind. She’s my blood.”
"Sometimes, when I'm going home to see her, I think: 'Nobody should be this happy on a Tuesday.'"
“Sometimes, when I’m going home to see her, I think: ‘Nobody should be this happy on a Tuesday.'”
"I work so many hours at the factory. I need to find a way for my daughter to live a better life than me." "How do you do that?" "I'm not sure. No time to think about that."
“I work so many hours at the factory. I need to find a way for my daughter to live a better life than me.” “How do you do that?” “I’m not sure. No time to think about that.”
"She won't talk to me until I get my shit together." "Who's she?" "Every man has a She."
“She won’t talk to me until I get my shit together.” “Who’s she?” “Every man has a She.”
Seen on Broadway.
Seen on Broadway.
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