If there’s such a thing as a typical path to becoming an artist, Brandon Stanton didn’t take it. No art school. No photography classes. No dropping out of college. Instead, the 28-year-old Georgia native landed a job as a bond trader in Chicago after betting $3,000 in student loans that Barack Obama would win the 2008 Democratic nomination. When he was later fired from the trading gig during the recession, he took another gamble: street photography. “I enjoy taking risks, whether it be trading bonds or moving to New York and stopping strangers on the street,” says the creator of Humans of New York.