Typographer and illustrator Craig Ward heard an urban legend that “using the handrails on the subway is like shaking hands with 100 people.” He decided to test that theory by sampling the bacteria on subway lines around New York City and photographing his findings. The results were striking and unconventional “portraits” of NYC commuters.
Produced by Emily V. Driscoll
Filmed by Jeff Nash
Music by Audio Network
Additional Photography © Tasha Sturm, The Mason Lab,
The Wall Street Journal and Martin Burch, Chris Canipe,
Madeline Farbman, Rachel Feierman and Robert Lee Hotz
Thanks to Christopher Mason, Craig Ward and Weill Cornell Medical College