We love to highlight your creative projects. When Travis sent this in to us, we immediately dug the concept. So enjoy his images and words in our Community Feature, "Last Night At The Bus Stop" by Travis Huggett.
I started shooting this series in 2014. I was first attracted to the contrast, looking into the over lit buses as they wound through the streets at night. Next it was the riders, weary, on their way home after a long day.
I shot at the bus stops around my Lower East Side apartment on and off for the next 5 years, learning where the best places to shoot were, and which buses provided the portraits I was looking for. Over time it started to feel like I was shooting yearbook photos for the LES. When I would see people on the streets, I thought I knew them, because I photographed them on the bus. It made me feel very connected to my neighborhood.
While shooting I'm not typically thinking beyond getting the photograph. Later, when I'm looking through what I've got, is when things get more interesting. I get a better look at everybody. I can read their body language. Sometimes I go as far as giving them a back story. That's when I start to feel like I know them beyond the moment. I don't, of course, but it does help me tell a story.
When I look at the portraits from years earlier, I'll still associate them with that moment in time. For some reason I can almost always remember what bus they were on and where I shot it. It feels like I'm looking back at photos of people I've known. Lately I've been looking at them and missing New York City before COVID. The energy on public transportation is so much different now.
I'm hoping that someday, years from now, people will look at the series as a broader portrait of the neighborhood. It's so diverse, and almost everybody rides the bus. I want it to be a time capsule, in the way other street photo projects from the past have become.
For more info on Travis, check out his Instagram here.
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