Saturday, May 23, 2009

Portraits from open train doors

From series Portraits from Open Train Doors, April 2008.

This series was taken in San Francisco's underground commuter train system. There are a few seconds, just after the commuters have settled into their places inside the train, when the doors remain open.

In a fraction of one of those seconds, I take these portraits. The people in these pictures are at rest; they are in between one moment -- the train about to depart -- and the next -- the train departing. Sometimes they are not aware of my camera, but usually they see it. They do not know how to react to what they are seeing because the camera is unexpected; it's not suppose to be there. The look on their faces is one of disbelief and incredulity. And just before they realize and understand what has just happened, the doors close and the train speeds away.


  1. Very cool. It's surprising how powerful the images are...maybe part of it is the "what the heck are you doing?" looks the people are giving, but whatever, the results are very cool.

  2. i wish i thought of this. you can never stage photos like these and the peoples reactions. i'm learning a lot in this blog.

  3. You find the most amazing people to portrait in this wonderful series. The entire blog is coming on as a very rewarding favorite!