Brandon Stanton

All Photos Twitter.com
Here's a stack of over a hundred new inquiries from incarcerated people seeking pen-pals! We have an URGENT need of volunteers to write people in jail, prison, & immigration detention. If you'd like to connect with folks inside, please DM us! And PLEASE like & share this post!
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“None of us were wanted. But Diamond was born first. So she had it the worst. She was the one who took away our mother’s childhood. And Mom never forgave her for that, so she didn’t let Diamond have a childhood either. She had to take care of all of us. I remember the day..."
This is a pretty neat AMA of Paul Ninson (@p_ninson), a Ghanaian photographer who is trying to build the first photo library in Ghana & has raised $1M so far through @humansofny. Check it out, drop a question, contribute if you feel like it, & #amplify! reddit.com/r/IAmA/comment…
Retweeted by Brandon Stanton
“It was our backyard. I’d let my daughters walk there by themselves. When I gave directions to our apartment, I’d say: ‘Imagine if the WTC fell over, it would land on our house.’ So it was like someone blew up our backyard. After the initial shock wore off,..."
“I’m trying to be on Broadway, but for some reason I can’t get away from toys. My very first job was at a little toy store in Brooklyn called Zak’s Fun House. For five Christmases in a row I was ‘Kingsley The Talking Bear’ at King’s Plaza Mall. Then In 2001 Toys 'R’ Us opened..."
Yesterday I shared the story of Ghanaian photographer Paul Ninson. For anyone who didn’t have time for all twelve chapters: Paul had a child at a young age, and taught himself photography to support his daughter. There were few resources available to him..."
Let’s Help Paul Build Dikan: bit.ly/letshelppaul
(12/12) “One morning I went to photograph a protest in Queens. It was a political protest of some sort, and it was an angry crowd. I think many of the attendees were anti-immigrant. One man got right in my face, waved his poster, and started chanting: ‘Go Home, Go Home...'"
(11/12) “My thoughts grew very dark. It felt like I was wearing new clothes, and I wanted to remove the clothes. But how could I remove my skin? And if I did—what would be left? I tried to push my feelings aside. I tried to switch off my emotions. But this time it wasn’t..."
(10/12) “Growing up in Ghana, I’d never once had to think about my skin color. I saw myself as African. I saw myself as Ghanaian. I saw myself as Asante. But never black. Because all of us were black. And to become sensitive to your skin, for the first time,.."
(9/12) “Every day after class I went to the main branch of the New York Public Library. It was my favorite place in the city. I couldn’t believe how big it was. This place had every book in the world. In Ghana I hadn’t been able to find a single photography book,.."
(8/12) “When I landed in New York I was full of joy. I spent the first few days exploring the city. I saw places that I’d only seen in photographs: Times Square, Central Park, The Empire State Building. During orientation I met other students from all over the world..."
(7/12) “My father is not an emotional man. But when I gave him the news, I could see the pride in his face. He was proud of the scholarship. Proud of everything I’d overcome. I was proud too. Oh boy, the things I was thinking! I felt like an important person..."
(6/12) "It was time for me to face the truth: there wasn’t a path for this kind of thing in Ghana. Photojournalism was not a way to feed my daughter. I stopped looking for stories to tell. I went back to weddings and events, and took any job I was offered. Later that year..."
(5/12) “I’d been rejected at the gate because I didn’t have a ‘body of work,’ so after that day those words became very important to me. I spent all my time in the internet café, researching stories that belonged in a ‘body of work.’ I discovered a blog post about a community..."
(4/12) “The online tutorials made photojournalism sound easy: ‘Quit your job, find the best story, get published.’ But this advice was for Westerners. Nobody quits their job in Ghana. And even if you did— there’s no place to publish your photos. I’d see pictures from Africa,.."
(3/12) “I sold all my possessions. I even let go of my apartment. But still it was not enough for a camera. So I turned to my mother for help. She sold second-hand clothes for a living. She knew nothing about photography. But when I told her a camera would help me be a father..."
(2/12) “My daughter was born three weeks early. I wasn’t there for the birth; I was working in another town. And that still hurts me today. When I arrived at the hospital I was almost too scared to hold her. She looked so fragile. And all I could think was..."
(1/12) “We were summoned to the house of my girlfriend to discuss the situation. The atmosphere was very tense. Her family on one side of the living room. Mine on the other. Her grandfather was the first to speak: ‘You should be ashamed,’ he told me. ‘For what you’ve done..."
“I was working as a school secretary. I’d just turned 40. My kids were finally a bit older, so I decided it was time. College was unfinished business for me. I’d gotten pregnant when I was seventeen. My mother kicked me out of the house, and I was forced to drop out of school..."
“Early childhood was chaotic; my brother and I endured a lot of abuse. Having one another helped. It was sort of: ‘Hey, at least there’s another human with me.’ We’ve handled our trauma differently over the years. My brother doesn’t trust authority, and he’s been arrested..."
I know they’re heartbroken they couldn’t do even more. But few things have inspired me more than all the normal people who jumped in with their hearts this week and decided to make the Afghan evacuation their personal responsibility. twitter.com/AP/status/1431…
(2/2) “I got saved by my baseball coach. His father was a judge, so he connected me to a powerful law firm. And they took my case pro bono. I was allowed to stay in the country, but I couldn’t qualify for student loans or financial aid. The only college that offered me a..."
(1/2) “My mother and I came from Costa Rica when I was seven. And on the first day of third grade I was jumped because I didn’t speak English. Two kids held my arms, while the third punched me in the stomach. I didn’t know how to say: ‘Why?’ So I kept saying: ‘But what?..."
“This place was a big part of their lives as a couple. When Dad came home from art school, his bus would drop him off in front of the diner. Most of the time Mom would meet him for a meal. And in the ten years since he’s passed away, she’s continued to make the four-block trip.."
“Our community was hit first. Asian restaurants were empty long before other restaurants. Even on the subway I could sense that racism was on the rise. On television one night there was a story about an elderly man who was collecting aluminum cans—just to survive..."
(2/2) “Before I left Miami my friend gave me an old Puerto Rican driver’s license. There was no picture back then, just a name: ‘Ramon Alvarez.’ So I decided: ‘My name is now Ray from Puerto Rico.’ In Miami it was warm like heaven. But when I arrived in New York..."
(1/2) “When I was a baby my stepmother put me on a donkey and sent me to live with my 15-year-old sister. You know what was my toys? Bones and rocks and dust! Each day I got a bowl of water and loaf of bread. As soon as I was old enough I enlisted in the Iranian Navy..."
“He ran his last NYC marathon on the day before his final surgery. The oncologist told him not to do it. By that time he had a massive tumor on his jaw. He couldn’t even swallow. It took him five hours, but he finished the race. Nobody could tell him to stop..."
(5/5) “Right away I knew I was in trouble. I typed ‘bookmobiles’ into Google and found an article from 1955. That was almost seventy years ago. And bookmobiles were costing $55,000 even back then. I wanted to run away and hide. I’d been so naïve..."
(4/5) “Nobody ever knew that Grandma was struggling. Because I’ve never been good at asking for help. But Grandma has always been struggling. Every year they kept raising that rent. Then the pandemic hit, and all my revenue stopped. The landlord didn’t care..."
(3/5) “I let my granddaughter Chelsea name the literacy center. And she named it ‘Grandma’s Place.’ Right away we organized our very first reading group, and five women showed up. These were mostly mothers who wanted to learn how to read to their children..."
(2/5) “Just as I was getting ready to retire a storefront became available next to my brownstone. I said: ‘Oh Lord, I’m in trouble. They’re going to open up a fish-and-chip joint, or something wild like that.’ And I didn’t want that smelly thing. Not next to my brownstone..."
(1/5) “All I have to do is think real hard about something—and it happens. Been that way my entire life. When I was a little girl I thought real hard about learning how to swim. No Harlem kids knew how to swim, but my neighbor Mr. Thorpe was from the islands..."
(3/3) “When you sit in this garden on a summer day—you hear things. There are fourteen homeless shelters within a four-block radius. So when it’s hot outside, and the windows are open, you can hear the stress of poverty. Sometimes mothers will yell at these kids..."
(2/3) “I knew nothing about gardening. But I knew how to google, so I looked up some easy stuff to plant. Turns out it’s hard to mess up herbs. So I went to the clearance rack at Home Depot and got some herbs. All of the soil was contaminated..."
(1/3) “I was a Prada-suit motherfucker. I was running a limousine company. But when the last financial crisis hit, I lost all my lines of credit and the whole thing came apart. I felt too old to start again. My wife would come home from work and find me still in my pajamas..."
“I’d been a singer in a lot of different bands. With a lot of different names. But I’d never been out front. It had never been like, you know: ‘Jill Fucking Fiore.’ But I finally got the courage to put my own band together. I was making moves. Then it was like: ‘Poof, pandemic.."
“He was different. He was so sensitive to the pain of the world. There used to be these placemats at Wendy’s with the faces of needy children. And Michael would just fixate on them. He was only four years old, but he’d ask me why we couldn’t adopt those children..."
“We got shut down two days before St. Patrick’s Day. Always the biggest day for an Irish bar. My husband is a longshoreman, so he was trapped in the Aleutian Islands for nine months—no flights out. It was just me and six kids that needed homeschooling..."
“People love to tell me their shit. That’s always been my superpower. A person in the back of an ambulance will tell me their deepest, darkest secrets. And I can usually find a connection with just about anyone. This is New York, so I’ve got patients from all over the world..."
“At it's essence it's very beautiful. No matter your race or color—we’re here to save you and provide comfort. But it’s not natural what you see in this job: shootings, stabbings, body over here, head over there. The other day a mother threw her kid out the window..."
(2/2) “The only photo I have from my childhood is from my sixth-grade report card. It was the same year my mother told me I had to leave school. I moved to Mexico City and began working as a housekeeper for a rich family. They had a daughter who was the same age as me..."
(1/2) “We were in a shelter for a couple months. My sisters weren’t old enough to remember, but I was five. So I still have memories. But one thing I don’t remember is my mother ever getting emotional. The only time she’d cry is when we were praying in church..."
“He always wanted me to dress like a queen. Whenever we went to a party, he’d say: ‘Put on your nicest sari. Or a little more jewelry’ And I’d tell him, ‘Oh Goyal, please shut up.’ But he loved clothes. It was his passion. Every piece of clothing in our store he chose himself..."
“My mother wanted something conventional. And that wasn’t my father. So after the age of five we never lived with him. Sundays were our day together. He’d take us to the candy store, or the flea market, or to bumper cars on Coney Island..."
Dr. Blair is a mentor of mine & a star character in my book "Horse Crazy," the 1st person to teach me the erased legacy of Black Cowboys. Thank you Brandon @humansofny for sharing our mission of inclusion. You can read more about this incredible man here: simonandschuster.com/books/Horse-Cr… twitter.com/humansofny/sta…
Retweeted by Brandon Stanton
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