I do enjoy Montreal tremendously, even in winter. This year, early March started with temperatures around -20C before moderating to around freezing point. I was able to visit my favourite areas - the Plateau, the Latin Quarter and old Montreal - using my Olympus EM-1 which is weather-proofed.
On the plateau, I find the narrow side streets to be full of character with old brick buildings close together, exhibiting lovely textures and the whole scene enlivened by the snow. You can see this in the first image which draws you towards the trees of Park La Fontaine.
The reds and browns are warm and rich against the cooler winter blue and white. The next shot shows a similar side street, this time sepia toned to stress the age and the bricks rather than the season.
The steep stairs leading into many homes on the plateau are well known. Their elegant lines encourage attractive architectural compositions whether in colour or black and white. Here the snow still awaits a serious thaw.
Saint-Denis is one of my favourite streets in Montreal as it links the plateau, the Latin Quarter and the old city. This image in subdued tones with hints of red is intended to capture a sense of damp, raw cold and yet retain the charm of the street.
The people make prime subjects as in this candid shot on Rue Saint-Denis. I walked slowly and shot the Olympus at waist level. Often this works well, albeit with substantial cropping.
On the other hand, this young man was content to pose for this shot in Square Saint-Louis. I have found Montreal people to be friendly and cooperative.
The Saint-Louis Square contains fountains and green spaces - in the right season. It is marked on the east side by the businesses of Rue Saint-Denis, but the other sides show off some of the most attractive older buildings in the city as in the next image.
Walking from the plateau down through the Latin Quarter towards the old city leads one through the Montreal campus of the University of Quebec and past several handsome older buildings before encountering the new buildings of the University of Montreal's Hospital Centre (CHUM). First the old:
And then the new:
I chose stark black and white to stress the texture and to avoid the distraction of the red and white barriers in the bottom right of the second photograph. Finally reaching the old city, there are numerous tourists even on a bleak March day. Here we find grand buildings like the city hall.
There are of course, more modest buildings - three hundred or more years old and built from stone rather than brick.
Climbing back to the plateau I was impressed as always by the brilliantly coloured wall art such as this call to revolution.
The final image is Rue Saint-Denis as seen from our hotel window.