Inspired by photographer Brandon Stanton's blog Humans of New York (HONY), professional and amateur photographers across the world have created blogs and Facebook pages where they collect images and stories of people from all walks of life –and Latin America has not been an exception.
Stanton's idea has inspired Latin American photographers who want to showcase their country or city through portraits of its diverse people.
This is a brief overview of some of the “Humans of…” projects in the region.
Humans of Buenos AiresFreelance photographer Jimena Mizrahi started Humans of Buenos Aires in May 2012, and her Facebook page has attracted over 11,000 likes.
Her project also caught the attention of a city official, which resulted in the first Humans of Buenos Aires exhibition. The Argentina Independent reports that “the exhibition ‘Micro historias del Microcentro’ featured displays of portraits of individuals who live or work in the city’s central business district”.
Jimena told The Argentina Independent that she does Humans of Buenos Aires “not only because I simply love interacting with people, but because each of these interactions is a lesson. Every person is a world.”
Humans of Colombia and Humans of Bogotá
Humans of Colombia was created by designer Maurent Roa and architect Gábor Szentpétery. During their travels the couple met Mauricio Romero, who has joined the project and contributed some photographs. While traveling, they also noticed that many people didn't know much about Colombia or had a negative perception of the country; with this project they aim to show a different side of Colombia.
“The idea is to represent Colombia through its people because ethnic diversity in Colombia is incredible. It is a mixture of Amerindians, Spanish and African descendants, and that's what we want to show the world,” Maurent explains.
For more photos from Colombia, you can also visit Humans of Bogotá, a page created in August 2013 by John Cardona and Jonathan Arévalo.
John and Jonathan are motivated by the response they've received, and by the chance to meet new people and hear stories that they can show the world through their page. They say that this movement “shows how we can all identify with someone, no matter how far they live.”
Humans of Bolivia
Created on November 3, 2013, Humans of Bolivia is one of the newest Facebook pages to mirror Humans of New York in the region. Estelí Puente and Mijhail Calle want to create the same empathy they saw in the New York project and similar projects like Humans of Amsterdam, “the feeling that humanity is formed by individuals with their own stories.”
Although Mijhail takes most of the photographs, they are reaching out to other photographers who can share images from different parts of Bolivia. “This dynamic is also allowing us to create a space to share and discuss the role of the image and photography in the construction of our identities, so for now it looks like this will be more than a series of portraits. We want it to be a reason to reflect about ourselves,” Estelí explains.
Humans of Honduras
Claudia Elvir and Daniela Mejía “invite you to get to know Honduras through its people” on their Facebook page Humans of Honduras.
Claudia started following Stanton's blog and was impressed by how he not only “captured impressive photographs, but also used them to capture the humanity behind each portrait, and how each photograph told a story that resonated in the hearts of the readers.”
Her friend Daniela conducts the interviews. Claudia and Daniela want to change the violent and negative image that the world has about Honduras, and they also want to change the way Hondurans see their own country.
Through their photographs and interviews, Claudia and Daniela hope to show that Honduras is a country “full of hard-working people, people with dreams, ambitions, joys and sorrows just like in every corner of the world.”
Humans of Guatemala
Elmer Alvarez had already been taking photographs of people around Guatemala before starting the Facebook page Humans of Guatemala in September 2013. Wendy Del Aguila, who now writes the captions, told Elmer about Humans of New York and he felt motivated to start a similar page about Guatemala.
Elmer and Wendy seek to capture “spontaneous moments of these extraordinary people reflecting their smile, passion, curiosity, hard work, shyness, kindness and most important their uniqueness!”
More “Humans of…” projects
The image above comes from Humans of Mexico, a page created in March 2010. Also from Mexico, Humans of Mexico City seeks to create a “photographic census of Mexico City. One street portrait at a time.”
Humans of Costa Rica, a page created in July of 2013, has more than 1,700 likes.
In Brazil, the Humans of Rio de Janeiro Facebook page is one of the most active in the region, and has over 9,000 likes.
Some Facebook pages -like Humans of Nicaragua, Humans of Panama, and Humans of Santiago, Chile- ask users to contribute photographs to the project. Others -like Humans of Quito, Humans of Lima, Humans of Peru, and Humans of Asunción- have been created less than a month ago.