(Wo)Man on the Street: Talking to Commuters on the Red Line

Today, we’re hopping the train and hitting the red line all day for impromptu interviews with commuters. We’ll be canvassing from Union Station metro all the way to Silver Spring, talking to riders along the way about their metro experience and the open space art along their route. Since weekend service on the D.C. metro usually means a longer wait time, passengers may be more willing to kill time by talking to us. Man on the street interviews tend to be a tricky trade-off in the documentary game, but we know the commuter perspective is an important part of capturing the red line’s story. Not just today, but throughout the course of this project.

Commuter Serena McClain offers a great example of the sort of public participation we’re looking for. Here’s what she had to say on her blog about her red line experience and the public art she’s encountered along the ride:

I find myself on the red line once every few weeks, usually commuting from DC to a meeting in Silver Spring, and despite all of the drama surrounding red line delays, I always look forward to the trip. Instead of burying my head in a book, I’m always treated to an ever-changing art show along the tracks … Despite the fact that I sit on the fence about whether “approved” graffiti takes something away from the people, you can’t deny that these murals are beautiful. You also can’t deny that talented artists deserve a platform from which to be seen.

We appreciate Serena’s input on red line aesthetics. (Check out her supporting slide show here.) We also hope others feel compelled to share with us. If we catch you on the red line today, be sure to greet us with a smile and an open mind. We’re aching to hear from you, if not out there on the line then online is the next best thing. Email us your thoughts at citylovedc@gmail.com .


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