Associate photo producer and photographer Tyler Metcalfe is joining the Millennial Trains Project, in which 25 bright young minds travel from Portland, Oregon, to New York, and share innovative ideas. Follow him on Instagram @tylermetcalfe as he rides across America documenting the project.
And we’re off! On August 6, after a few months of digital correspondence, the participants of the 2014 Millennial Trains Project slowly trickled into a small lobby at Portland’s Union Station to meet face-to-face for the first time. Setting the tone for the ten-day journey, the participants immediately broke into small groups to discuss major issues in today’s society and how they might collaborate over the next few days in order to address some of those issues, broaden their perspectives, and work to make a difference.
“We’re creating a community in a mobile space, which is something people haven’t done in a long time,” said project founder Patrick Dowd, a National Geographic Traveler editor at large.
The first few days of the project allowed participants to chat with leaders, innovators, and makers in the Portland community. My first stops included a visit to ADX Portland, a community-focused collaborative workspace, and a tour with the city’s first lady, Nancy Hales. After a slew of activities, the group reconvened and departed Portland, making our way to Seattle.
There, I followed participant Ayla Boyle, whose work focuses on using art to enrich dead city spaces and engages communities with yarn-based art games. Our path took us through Freeway Park, where we explored temporary art installations put up by local artists, and ended at a park near the Space Needle, where Boyle proceeded to weave an installation in a local space.