The amusing spin on the traditional pin-up calendar features a roundup of the city’s most good-humoured drivers, in a series of classic pin-up poses. Now in its fourth year, the calendar is the brainchild of Philip and Shannon Kirkman, who were inspired to undertake the project after making a tongue-in-cheek calendar of Philip’s brother, as a Christmas gift for his wife in 2012.
“It was well received by family and friends and since I had recently left my career in finance to pursue a creative, comedic path, Shannon and I brainstormed on how we could expand the idea for a larger audience,” Philip Kirkman tells Lonely Planet. “We considered other groups like sanitation workers, but ultimately landed on yellow cab drivers due to their iconic status, yet relative lack of visibility or appreciation.” After posting an online ad, the Kirkmans found their models.
Shannon Kirkman photographed the drivers, and while noting the logistical challenges of shooting on city streets — namely lighting, weather, crowds, and traffic — she says each session was fun. “Phil and I love meeting and getting to know each of the drivers, and with such a diverse group this year, it was really inspiring to hear each of their stories,” says Shannon. “We work with a variety of comfort levels; some of the guys are very outgoing and even have their own ideas for poses, while others are a bit more shy at first. We work with each individual driver to showcase their unique personality and sense of humour, and we’ll never push them to do anything that makes them uncomfortable.”
A portion of each $14.99 (£12) calendar will go to University Settlement. Based in New York City and founded in 1886, the non-profit organisation provides basic services like quality education, housing, recreation and wellness opportunities, and literacy programs to over 30,000 immigrants every year. So far the project has raised over $55,000 for the organisation.