Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Just a wee bit 'o Ireland in Montreal

March 20th was the 187th consecutive Montreal St-Patrick's day parade, longest running in Canada and one of the longest in North America. I did some photos for Virgin 96 (local radio) and had some fun taking shots of the other floats and parade go-ers.

Last year's parade had an unfortunate accidental death where a man fell under a float, so this year had pretty hyped up security with over 200 private security guards and police tech students helping out. Police only arrested a few people for public drunkenness, which I think is a pretty standard thing for St-Patrick's day

The weather was amazing. The parade not only celebrates St-Patrick and the irish culture, it also is one of the first signs of spring!

Parades are a great time to practice some candid photography as well as training your eye and brain to work fast in getting the shot. Things can go by quickly in a parade. In a split second, you can have amazing eye contact with someone and then it's gone. People shots are a must, as well as float shots and celebrity shots. But also keep an eye out for little details on the floats that can be interesting.

The parade started at noon, but I was downtown around 10:00am and walked the street where the floats were parked and getting ready. It gave me a great opportunity to do some shots without being surrounded by hundreds of people. I had a great time shooting the dogs of the SPCA who were parading as their "owners" were dressing them up in their St-Patrick's best.

Here are some images from the parade.