Sutton Volunteer Centre celebrates 35 years with book of photographs
The Sutton Volunteer Centre celebrated its 35th anniversary by creating a unique photography book featuring its volunteers, employees, and even some of the people who use the CAB’S services. Fifth- and sixthgrade students at the Sutton school interviewed the subjects.
The interviews helped the students understand what volunteering is all about and why people do it, CAB Director Janna Hubacek said.
The book, “Retrolobo du CAB,” contains original photos of the volunteers when they were young, and re-creations of those photos of the same people as adults. It is on sale for $20.
The book was launched Friday with a reception at the Sutton Covered Market. The photos were displayed on the walls, where they will remain until the spring, Hubacek said. After that, they will see about installing them outside.
The artistic directors for the project were Isabelle Grenier and Stephane Lemardele. Lemardele said he saw a similar project in the United Kingdom. He decided to add the aspect of having students interview the subjects to get their stories, specifically about why they volunteer.
Two photographers, Eliane Excoffier and Tristan Corbeil Lapointe, took the pictures while others built sets, found setting locations and made sure the clothing was similar to that in the original photos.
The team had been thinking about the project since last spring, and with the thirty-fifth anniversary approaching, Lemardele said, “it was time to use the idea of the book.”
They started in September and things fell into place quickly.
“It was amazing how the children and the older people connected,” Lemardele said. “It was like there was no age between them. The eyes were the same whether they were 8 or 80.”
He said Max Gagnon, the boy on the tricycle who is on the book’s cover, was quiet at age 7, when the original photo was taken. But at 70, he said, he was more boisterous.
“I want to be like that when I’m old,” Lemardele said.
He said the subjects displayed emotion.
“There were memories, but no nostalgia.”
The project was equally as exciting for the photographers.
“It was so fun,” Excoffier said. “Some of the stories were touching; others were fun. It was a nice human experience.”
It took three weeks to complete the photography, she said. They were paid a small stipend for the work, but it wasn’t about the money, she said. It was about the experience.
Stephane Lemardele, the artistic director of the project, and Eliane Excoffier, one of the photographers, speak at the book launch Friday at the Sutton Covered Market
Max Gagnon at 7 and 70
Lina and Luce Goerlach