Flavorwire Exclusive: Spot-on Portraits of People You See on the Subway


Adam Ellis left art school after a fellow student presented her final project to the class, saying, “I put a condom on the Virgin Mary” and winning the praise of the professor. He got out, moved to Portland, Oregon, and quickly realized that the real adult world is a pretty insane and scary place. So he did what everybody does when they’re just trying to get by and see tons of interesting people on a daily basis: he started a blog filled with illustrations and stories that weave together a hilarious and charming narrative about a young guy who’s just trying to find his place in the world, and the strange people he meets. Now the blog has been turned into a book, Books of Adam: The Blunder Years. Ellis has kindly allowed us to debut a series of portraits called People You See on the Subway. “When I ride the subway, I like to look around at people, make up names for them, and invent stories about them in my head,” he explains. “This is a handful of people I’ve seen on the New York subway and the backstories I’ve created for them.”