mplscreeper: people watching w/ instagram

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Stubble: What is mplscreeper for those not familiar with it?
@mplscreeper: @mplscreeper is an instagram account that a group of people who live and work in Minneapolis started as a way to capture, collect, and share the many myriad characters that they see out and about in their daily lives.

It was launched in early June, 2013, but we’d been thinking about it for some time. We had a bunch of photos of random people, and they didn’t fit in on our personal Instagram accounts, because we’d taken them in a hurry to capture a person or a moment to share with each other later on. So, instead of sharing the cavalcade of characters just amongst ourselves, we thought we’d make a public instagram account so that others could share in the richness and variety of people that populate our fair city.

Stubble: Why do you creep?
@mplscreeper: Like a lot of people, we like to people watch. We find it fascinating to imagine back stories for people — where they’re going, where they’ve been, what’s on their mind, what they deal with on a day-to-day basis, etc. @mplscreeper has been a way to make our people watching a shared experience. We don’t approach this in a mean-spirited fashion, nor do we wish to make anyone uncomfortable, we simply want to share images of people that stick out to us as being particularly unique.

Stubble: How do you go about creeping — when you’re walking down the street, what kind of people do you look for?
@mplscreeper: We don’t often have to look too hard or travel too far to find people that stand out from the masses. some things that make people stand out to us are a seemingly strong character – a sense that this person’s story is particularly interesting. we don’t search out people performing crazy acts, or people dressed up in funny costumes – although these people do find their way into our photos from time to time. we are more interested in the subtle stories that reveal themselves in people just being themselves, Like someone walking a cat on a leash:

A man apparently romantically involved with 2 women:

Or the stoned young man at a public concert swaying to the music precariously clutching a mango on a stick:

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#tcpride #tcpride2013

A post shared by CREEPERS (@mplscreeper) on

Stubble: Are you associated with at all?
@mplscreeper: We are not associated with the twitter account @mplscreeper, and were not aware of this account until now. That person appears to have a sexually voyeuristic slant to his or her posts and we don’t condone that style of creeping.

Stubble: Do you have any opinions about privacy in general? On the NSA spying, or the changing definition of what’s secret and what’s public?
@mplscreeper: @mplscreeper does it’s best to remain apolitical in its endeavors.

Stubble: Are there any mplscreeper shots that you’re particularly proud of or that have a good story?
@mplscreeper: There is a man who wears a kilt and resembles Teddy Kennedy who has made 4 appearances on @mplscreeper over the course of several months. He was spotted at several locations around the Twin Cities.

View this post on Instagram

#tcpride #tcpride2013

A post shared by CREEPERS (@mplscreeper) on

The man in the automatic wheelchair who pulls his friend wearing rollerskates:

The man who lets his dog ride on the foot part of his wheelchair:

Really, we hope that all of our images spark the imagination of the viewer in some way or another; we hope that all of our photos tell a story.

Stubble: What else do you do in town? What makes you keep your identity secret?
@mplscreeper: We keep our identities secret because we believe in principles before personalities. We believe @mplscreeper is a more effective story-telling, character-sharing entity because we are anonymous and our images aren’t constrained by the context of who we are or what we do. We are just another bunch of characters that live in this city.

@mplscreeper shares their light-hearted viewpoint of the wildy varied people that populate our beautiful city on instagram


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