MIKE BRODIE’s Hobo Youth

Born in 1985, Mike Brodie began photographing when he was given a Polaroid camera in 2004. Working under the moniker ‘The Polaroid Kidd,’ Brodie spent the next four years circumambulating the United States, amassing an archive of photographs that make up one of the few, true collections of American travel photography. Brodie made work in the tradition of photographers like Robert Frank, William Eggleston and Stephen Shore, but due to never having undergone any formal training he always remained untethered to the pressures and expectations of Β the art market.

Brodie compulsively documented his exploration of the tumultuous world of transient subcultures without regard to how the photographs would exist beyond him. After feeling as though he documented all that he could of his subject, his insatiable wanderlust found a new passion, and as quickly as he began making photographs, he has left the medium to continue in his constant pursuit of new adventures.










Advertise here !!!

  • Nope

    Nice…pictures of people who need a shower.

  • ana

    beautiful πŸ™‚ nomads <3 living life the way its meant to be. thank you for these pictures.

  • Rachel

    cool nikes. are those the “rebel against the man” edition?

  • not sure that’s how life is meant to be lived. I’m pretty sure frequent showers are the righteous way but to each his own.

  • Hi

    Cool comment Rachel. Is that the “I’m a pretentious know-it-all” edition?

    Your comment implies you know more about his lifestyle than he does. You have no idea whether there is a reason behind wearing those shoes or not.

    I agree with AMIR. Each to their own.

  • sara

    Beautiful colors and composition from an untrained hobbyist. He’s got the eye.

  • Mike

    You guys are bitching about these people and are missing the artistic value of these photographs. This is some pretty damn intimate work that no outsider would be able to gain access to. This photographer lived along side/travelled with these people and got some great shots because of that.

  • Pedro

    “road photography” and the concept of strict social inequality that fuelled it used to be reserved for people who had no other option. now that entitled, trust-fund, douchebags try to establish an identity by rejecting their assigned one, is hardly noble. nor is it in any way interesting. if your mom doesn’t love you enough, go to Brown instead of Stanford, just don’t pretend you’re anything more/or less than that.

  • Thomas

    Oh man, whatever did the human race do before showers? Open your mind.

    They a feel like the FSA images from the Depression invoke. Very great stuff.

  • chris

    crusties are alright when they’re not dragging around their poor dogs who never asked to be on the road, or begging for change on south st. i’m all for dropping out and traveling for awhile, but don’t ask anyone to pay for your expenses (or for your fucking beer/dope). i certainly wouldn’t be bummin around in a city if i were traveling, what a waste of time! don’t really care about the photographs, seen it too many times.

  • T. Doc

    have fun being angry on the internet!!!

  • i love the second picture πŸ™‚

  • I lived in a house that would get a lot of traveler kids rolling through. A lot of them were great company, but there were a lot of them that were shitty people as well. Most the ones who stayed at my place cleaned, liked sleeping outside, and played music at the farmers market to make what little money they needed. A couple of them stayed on long term, and one even became a roommate for a few months. I will say this- out of all of the traveler kids I met, only one of them gave up an easy life. Most of them came from lives of being shit on and decided to let the experience free them from all of that. If I ever see traveler kids these days, I always give them food or pocket change. I don’t care what their background or reason is, they’re hungry and grateful.

  • wavndav64

    All of these kids are showing exactly what not to do with your life… Ride a train and see what happens…It is not at all romantic when you lose an arm or a leg from getting run over. As a loco engineer, I have witnessed these things happen. Look at the last picture. See that there is no bottom in that car. It was designed to carry shipping containers, not people. A little slack runs in from rough train handling and it sends you lurching forward—where are you going to go? Tumbling under the wheels, that’s where. Ok, you say, I will ride a car that has a load in it. That lumber car has just enough room for me to ride comfortably… Well, think again… Slack runs in and now you are smashed between a bulkhead and the lumber with your blood running between the cracks in the floor… Yes, it happens. Or you might want to ride in a boxcar. Great idea. Until the door won’t open and the temp goes up. Run out of water and see what happens… Not a pretty sight, let me tell you. A very unsafe place to play. If you want to take pretty pictures, go to a park. Go downtown. Go anyplace but the near the rails. Would you go out in the middle of the freeway during rushhour and take photos? I think not.

  • Richard Johnson

    Lol, you mad bro?

  • You are obviously clueless and in desperate need of enlightenment. The photos could be interpreted that way, sure, if you are closed-minded. But I don’t see the photographs advocating that type of lifestyle any more than pictures of starving kids in Africa encourage poverty and starvation. Widen your view, it will make life full and magnificent.

  • Economic decline predicted for U.S. Even a “Fiscal Cliff”, followed by recession/depression. Will we see more young folk travelling this way as we did in the Dirty Thirties? Even as the Uber Rich ride about in foreign chariots? China is about to explode their “Population Bomb” alongside their recent Thorium LFTR reactors. This will change the face of the energy maps of the world, dethrone the U.S. Dollar/Oil royalty, and even upset further the balance of trade in this world. Expect much ,ore unemployment, in-equal wealth distribution in the U.S. and more poor young folks on the rails. riding their thumbs on highways, and pretty much bumming their way through life as job opportunities become fewer, times get harder. America – the great divide between the privileged and the peons, has never taken good care of the lower classes, always held them in disdain.

  • Actually showering with hot water is unnatural… These people are truly living… Wish I could Drop everything and do this

  • molarmammal36

    Wish I could just drop everything and be careless like this. But then I think what it would turn into. They do look free though.

  • life enthusiast

    shut up old man

  • Jose

    Cool pix. Staged, but interesting looks.

  • Notlikeyou

    take your meds grandpa