A Period of Juvenile♥✕
Meet the modern day Jack Kerouacs and Dean Moriarties of this world. Mike Brodie got a Polaroid SX-70 at age 17, started hopping trains at age 18. His girlfriend at the time was into the punk scene and that’s where Brodie found out about teenagers going across America by train. Quickly, he began phantasizing about having his own life on the road, so one day he decided to leave everything behind and hop on a freight train. He put his beloved Polaroid in his backpack and got on his first train. He learned about the subculture and met the persons forming it. He learned that there is just a handful of teenagers doing it and they all seem to know each other. Brodie became part of this select group of post-punk rebels and began capturing his newfound friends and life. He started to scan his polaroids digitally and placed them on his website and it didn’t took long before galleries discovered him. The money he made with this went to his mom, while he kept to riding trains. In 2005, Polaroid discontinued SX-70 film, so he got himself a second hand Nikon F3 SLR and learned to shoot 35mm. The change in format also incorporated a change in style: from portraits to more documentary-like images. Instead of simply showing the people he met and interacted with, he began to document their lives.
Now, his travelling days are over and he rarely photographs anymore. He still loves trains though, as he now works as a railroad mechanic. Nevertheless, his short-lived photographic escapades will mark him down as one of America’s most important contemporary travel photographers.