On The Subway

I have always been a big fan of Walker Evans and his subway portraits.

Between 1938 and 1941 Evans shot portraits of strangers in the New York subway. He concealed a camera under his coat, fitted with a shutter release running inside his sleeve. In 1966 he published a book of the pictures entitled “Many Are Called”; in the same year they were exhibited at the Museum of Modern Art.

How did he do it? How was it possible for him to get away with that? Nobody heard the shutter release or was he just doing it during a time when people would not expect anybody to hide a camera under a coat?

I think nowadays it would be impossible to do the same without people realizing what is going on.

But what about an iPhone? What about pretending to listen to music but instead using the built in camera to take pictures. There is no sound, no pointing a lens it is completely unintrusive.




“On The Subway” Path Train on the way to Hoboken/Portrait of a stranger 03-30-09 at 04:05 PM


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