au revoir montreal part II: photo walks

Over the past year, I've been lucky to take part in a series of photographer meetups with friends. We call these meetups photo walks, and they consist simply of those two elements: walking and taking photos. Our first photo walk took place last fall, and since then we've been meeting up as often as possible. For every walk, we choose a different neighbourhood and set new challenges for ourselves.

The photos taken during these walks aren't meant to be perfect, or even good.  They're simply meant to be an experiment, and a way to tackle challenging scenarios in a relaxed setting, so that we will help ourselves be more prepared for such challenges should they arise on the job. Whether it was shooting in extreme temperatures, with flat and gray light, with almost nonexistent light, or at less-than-ideal locations, we purposely looked for difficult situations and learned so much from each one. Either before or after our shoot, we always made sure to have a drink or a meal together, to chat about photography and what was new in our lives.

If you're a photographer looking to improve your work and make some great friends along the way, consider starting up your own photo walk group! Spending time with Lisa, Jenny and Tiffany has been so lovely this year and this is something I'll really miss after we move.

You may notice these photos are quite different from my usual style. On a walk, we're usually coming straight from our respective offices, with little regard for makeup and hair, or styling. We set aside our usual preoccupation with posing and composition and getting everything right, and focus on just having fun and letting go. What a treat.

Here are my favourite moments from the last year:

In March we braved the absolutely freezing temperatures to take photos in the Quartier des Spectacles (entertainment district). Above, from left to right: me, Lisa, Jenny.

After finishing her Master's program, Jenny moved back to Calgary (silent tear; we miss you!) and Tiffany joined the photo walks. This time around, we headed to Montreal's Old Port.

In August, we explored the outskirts of Little Italy, then stopped for a drink and a snack at Alexandraplatz, a fantastic bar, for drinks and tacos.

Finally, last month we had a delicious brunch at Le Comptoir, then walked up Mount Royal, the large hill that looms over downtown Montreal. 

Girls, thank you so much for the wonderful memories and all the great things we learned together.  I hope we can head out again when I'm visiting in the spring!