Sometimes you're so absorbed in the wows or woes of your own life that you forget that everyone in the city has a special story that is totally unique, personal, and often, quite touching. To remind all of Montreal that we all have a story to tell, Portraits de/of Montreal are taking to the streets, giving the unheard a voice.
Portraits of Montreal is basically the Montreal version of Humans of New York, as the PoM founders credit their inspiration to New York photographer Brandon Stanton. In much the same vein, Portraits of Montreal is not solely based on pictures, but also includes quotes from the person being photographed, so as to give a better window into the lives of these random people.
Conversation is at the core of Portraits of Montreal, and the quotations attached to each image are gained from a person-to-person talk between the individual and the photographers. A more fully realized image of the person is created, and through this, Portraits of Montreal hopes to create a stronger bond between all residents of Montreal.
We were lucky enough to help launch Portraits of Montreal's first video back in April (watch here) but since then the project has flourished and gone on to to touch the lives of many others. See the full photo album at the FB page here, and check out a small snippet of folks below.
"What do you two have in common?"
"Hmmm an address? We used to be roommates."
"She's the first person I met when I came to Montreal. She was my roommate, she became my friend."
"Also we're both expats: I'm from around here but I live in Costa Rica, and she's from Belgium."
"Unfortunately it's not mine, we're shooting a music video in the back alley."
"Do you remember the happiest moment of your life?"
"Pretty much the last 6 weeks. I'm studying classical singing at the university, and I was in Edmonton for a training music camp with people of all ages and from everywhere in Canada. It was very intensive: 6 days a week, 10 hours a day; but very inspiring and rich. I was surrounded by people as passionate as me, who were there for sharing. It has absolutely confirmed what I would like to do after completing my degree!"
"He proposed in our favorite restaurant. I wasn't expecting it at all, I was like 'What are you doing? Get up!' But I said yes right away."
"Are you going to dance?"
"No! I will only dance at my dance classes!"
"He's gay, but I love him the same! He's my best friend."
"I used to be a makeup artist."
"Can I take a picture of your dog?"
"Sure! But it's really too bad, her hair is not done today!"
"What's your favorite thing about her?"
"I like that she's all geeky and nerdy, always in her books. She's got a lot of knowledge and that's sexy."
"Hello sir, how are you?"
"Are you a knight?"
"I'm part of the bourgeoisie, and I'm an arms dealer. Up there the battle rages on, but I was going to remove the armor because I'm cooking inside!"
To see more stories, check out Portraits of Montreal's FB page here.
For more on all things Montreal, follow Michael on Twitter @MDAlimonte