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Meet the Amazing, Beautiful Humans of New York (Photos)

humans of new york, street photography, portraits, living in new york city, diversity

Meet the Humans of New York.

I first came across the Humans of New York project when I saw this photo, left, on Facebook. It was one of the most striking images I’d ever seen, so I clicked in to look at the rest of the photos attached to what the photographer describes as “The photographic census of NYC. One street portrait at a time.” The young man behind the project, Brandon Stanton, has generously allowed me to share some of his work with you here, so I’ve selected 25 portraits that represent the beautiful array of families living here in New York City, as well as a few of the most iconic archetypes and characters roaming the streets and subways.

I’ve used Stanton’s original photo captions when possible; those are in quotes below. All other commentary including photo titles is mine. (Stanton doesn’t title his work.) Now laugh, tear up at, admire and fall in love with the Humans of New York:


  • Red, White and Blue 1 of 25
    Red, White and Blue
    This is the photo that captured my heart and sent me clicking through all of Brandon's amazing photographs. A blend of the Muslim world and the American flag.
  • Central Park East 2 of 25
    Central Park East
    Put a little boogie in it!
  • BALA 3 of 25
    BALA
    "My wife passed away a few years back. Her name was Barbara, I used to call her Ba. My name was Lawrence, she used to call me La. When she died, I change my name to Bala."
  • Reggae Banana 4 of 25
    Reggae Banana
    You can win one as a prize at Coney Island. So wrong.
  • Chinese New Year 5 of 25
    Chinese New Year
    Kids celebrating the year of the dragon.
  • Best Thing 6 of 25
    Best Thing
    "Best thing that ever happened to me."
  • Subway Breaker 7 of 25
    Subway Breaker
    Only in New York!
  • Seeing Double 8 of 25
    Seeing Double
    I never noticed how many New York families dress their kids in matching coats. Easier to see if one gets away from you, I guess.
  • Chess 9 of 25
    Chess
    Classic New York character.
  • Baby Doll Daddy 10 of 25
    Baby Doll Daddy
    "I loved how Dad was carrying the doll and the little girl was carrying the newspaper."
  • Bed-Stuy 11 of 25
    Bed-Stuy
    The family that dresses together, stays together.
  • Smooches 12 of 25
    Smooches
    "Leave a tender moment alone."
  • Black Hebrew Israelite 13 of 25
    Black Hebrew Israelite
    "I can't tell you all the details of this man's religious sect, but from what I've seen I'm pretty sure white people don't go to heaven." I pity the poor tourist who runs into these guys on their way to go see Sister Act on Broadway!
  • Sprung 14 of 25
    Sprung
    This chick is in full bloom.
  • Frog 15 of 25
    Frog
    This one made me laugh out loud with delight.
  • Valentines 16 of 25
    Valentines
    "This year a lot of people are celebrating their first Valentine's Day as a married couple."
  • Family 17 of 25
    Family
    "I started across the street because I saw a sweet Reggae hat, then I discovered there was an entire family attached."
  • Two Hearts 18 of 25
    Two Hearts
    "May I take your photo?" "Because of the hat?" "Because of a lot of things."
  • Williamsburg 19 of 25
    Williamsburg
    "Kinda sad that I'm 20 years older than this kid, and he looks better walking home from school than I've ever looked in my life."
  • Laundry Cart 20 of 25
    Laundry Cart
    Such a totally New York moment!
  • Like Mother, Like Daughter 21 of 25
    Like Mother, Like Daughter
    "I love parent/child style teams."
  • Pregnant 22 of 25
    Pregnant
    Beautiful!
  • Spring! 23 of 25
    Spring!
    Okay, she's not technically a human. But she's adorable! In honor of our newest blog, Babble Pets.
  • Twins 24 of 25
    Twins
    Another laugh-out-loud funny portrait. It's hard to even say why. But these kids are clearly up to something!
  • Vince Woods 25 of 25
    Vince Woods
    Notable New York character. My daughter and I ran into him for the first time during the Easter parade last year. He loves getting his picture taken!

For more incredible photos, check out the Humans of New York Facebook page as well as the Humans of New York site.

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