My personal project - Montreal photoshooting: WE are fashion!

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6 months ago, I nervously landed at Pierre Elliott Trudeau airport and I was just thinking about what can Montreal actually give to me - I mean, yes Canada is a beautiful country and Quebec is an interesting province, but imagine to live in a new city for longer period of time. Another question was - what did I really expect?
I came to Canada because my boyfriend got a very good job in Montreal (in English speaking company), so I saw this as an amazing opportunity for me, too. Even though the whole process of getting a work permit was very (I mean VERY) stressful because I have always "luck" speaking about the paper work; and I did not get any proper job through my stay; thanks to Montreal I have realized one thing - I am a very strong person and nothing could really stop me. It could now sound selfish, but when you are miles and miles away from your home, family and your native language it is hard and you need to learn how to "survive". I mean, a language barrier (speaking about French) made me really hard time here. I know that you could now think: "Girl, you decided to live in French province, what did you expect?" Well, I did not expect that NOBODY will give me an opportunity to work, because of not speaking French fluently! It is interesting that many locals told me: "That is impossible, you do not need French to find a proper job here." Well, guys I have a half year long list of proofs I do... But I do not want to sound angry or negatively, I just want to show you the reality I have faced here.


I have experienced those days when I printed hundreds of CVs and I literally entered every clothing shop, every coffee house, bookstore - anything in Montreal, or I submitted them online for many times and nobody ever responded to me; I have experienced those days when I finally could arrange via phone my first job interview with manager of one retail store and he just cutted me off after my question if he could repeat a sentence slower because I can not understand in that speed what he is saying; I have experienced those days when I felt lost because I did not understand a word and I did not know if I am supposed to cry or laugh at that moment; I have also experienced those days when I got angry and I just decided to make my own business cards, started to attend every fashion show, fashion conference (anything that included fashion industry) in the city and tried to build my own network; and I have remembered one funny moment when I was looking for a job and forgot the fact that the last printed CV I had with me I left at one shop so I gave my new pink Magnifique Brunette business card (freshly printed in that day) to a butcher and I felt very stupid. I have also experienced those days when I took intensive French course, I was trying to learn and speak French and be a part of the community here - I was trying to find any kind of job - housekeeping, a help in the kitchen, dish-washing - basically anything. Well, expect for one small part time job thanks to my host mother, I had nothing at all. One day I had enough. I was sitting alone in our room and thinking about what I am doing wrong. I felt frustrated and my tears started rolling down my cheeks. I felt un-welcomed, stupid and I do not wish this feeling anyone. Then I spotted my fashion books I had with me. They are all about famous names in fashion industry - the people I admire a lot. After that I realized I have two options - I will continue to cry, and thinking how this whole situation is unfair; or I will get up and change the situation into my advantage! I chose the second option. This is the moment when I sketched a design of my own business card and when I took our DSLR camera and practiced how to be more professional; and most importantly, this was the moment I decided to attend every fashion event I found - even the fact there might be people who speak only French or little English. I told to myself - nothing will stop you! Thanks to my strength I am standing now where I am standing and without it I will not have my freelancing, new friends and people will not respect me as a professional photographer, stylist or journalist. I was accredited to many fashion events as a press or photographer and I started to do freelancing, as well.



This is life. Nothing is perfect. However, thanks to Montreal I met incredible people. Fashion really connected us. I have decided to turn my weakness into my strength so I have decided to make my own photoshooting situated in Montreal and present you four beautiful personalities - Susana, Amanda, Martha and Sarah. They became my friends and I could not be happier for it! Thanks to them I have realized I could be better every day - I just must work hard and trust myself in every situation!
You have now a special opportunity to meet different cultures and read their opinions of Montreal and fashion, as well.  Through these admirable women, I want to show you how I see this amazing city  which is full of freedom, friendly people (although my bad experience with French it does not mean all people here are unfriendly!), delicious poutine, stunning European vibe and; how I discovered different types of fashion. Because fashion is not only about clothes - it is about self-confidence, energy, creativity, happiness and diversity, as well. Enjoy it!


Susana originally comes from Peru and she has a wonderful personality. She is an active blogger "Sunshine in Style" where she promotes motivations and encourages others to get out of their comfort zone. I remember the day we met - at the CFBA fashion conference where she asked me if I am from the organization team because she thought I looked very stylish. She is naturally beautiful and very calm person, who smiles all the time. She loves hiking, forrests and nature. When she described me where she lives (small town near Montreal) and mentioned that there are trees and flowers everywhere, her eyes were shining like diamonds. Thanks to her I started to see people here in a different point of view - there exists an incredible connection between them and nature. They are very eco-friendly, love to use bicycles instead of cars and you should see those friendly meetings in local parks almost every day. When sun is shining, they just grab their lunch and make picnic in those parks, walk barefeet, sleep or read books on the grass and receive that massive energy.

"I love Montreal because this is a city that provides many opportunities and allow individuals to be free in expressing themselves. I started to realize how important it is to listen to your feelings everyday. It is not just how clothes make you look, but how they make you feel. Fashion is not about looking trendy to me, it is about feeling comfortable and confident."











Amanda is a local - she grew up and lives here in Montreal. When I met her at the Fashion Preview event, I knew we will be on the same wave. She is a blogger "The Glam Edit" and I love her Parisian style. Thanks to her I recognized another interesting Montreal's feature - when I observed this woman I imagined those Saturday's market shopping where you are enjoying picking fresh vegetables, fruits; eating fresh baguettes, admiring flowers, and after that ordinary but somehow magical experience you continue with your friends - by a cup of good coffee and a tasty croissant. You chat and laugh all the time.

"I love this city for the fact we are insanely creative and collaborative. We are all together and we all come from different places in the world which I believe makes us the inclusive and open society that we are. Speaking about fashion, I am all for women's autonomy and equality, and that comes with freedom to choose what we want to wear. There is so much individuality here in Montreal and that is what I feel defines Montreal fashion."










The next one is Martha - a girl from Quebec with roots from Rwanda. She grew up in Gatineau and moved to Montreal 3 years ago to study psychology and business. She is so beautiful. She looks wild but her soul is very gentle. This is the way I could describe majority of young people here. This city is full of local artists, local designers, and in general, it has that young, urban feeling. My photoshooting with her expresses fearlessness, youth, streetstyle and freedom.

"I fell in love with Montreal because of how the city is so alive and vibrant! I also love how the population is so diverse. Speaking about fashion, I have always been intrigued about how people can be affected by clothes."








The last but not least is Sarah. She was born in Algeria and moved to Montreal with her family when she was 8. When we first met, I noticed her different style - so called hijab fashion. Thanks to her I want to present you the multicultural society and human's own belief. Sarah is a wonderful woman and I like the fact you can express your personality, your culture or different belief and be respected by the others, in the same time. You could walk through beautiful historical streets like those in Old Port and enjoying being yourself - having a date just with the city itself. In many ways, Montreal is open to everyone and I am happy that I could met so many interesting people from around the world!

"I love Montreal for its diversity of foods, in places and most importantly, in people! The culture of cafés is very special here, and it needs to be cultivated. My opinion of fashion in Montreal is that I absolutely love how everyone is free to wear whatever they want and be what they want to be! I feel like this city is encouraging everyone to be themselves, especial women."












I can not believe I am leaving Montreal and this chapter of my life will end soon. I can not believe I DID it - people started recognize me as a professional in a fashion industry. Even though my time here was not always great, this city became my second home and it taught me how to NEVER give up. This project is a good proof, haha. I would like to thank Susana, Amanda, Martha and Sarah for being a part of this project; for showing me different parts of Montreal, and most importantly - for becoming my friends! It is very hard to say goodbye...

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