Stories of Immigration from the 50 States
A captivating photographic portrait of the diverse experiences of immigrants in the United States, depicting the resilience and realities of building a home in a new place.Buy Book
In 2017, documentary photographer Colin Boyd Shafer set out on the first leg of an ambitious project photographing immigrants in every U.S state. With his partner, Kate, he drove 400 miles from their home in Kitchener, Ontario, to South Burlington, Vermont, to meet Youness, an American who emigrated from Morocco. Two years later, Shafer had travelled more than 40,000 miles, recorded hundreds of hours of interviews, and made thousands of photos.
Motivated by the increasingly hateful rhetoric around immigration in the United States at the time, Shafer wanted to convey the real human stories behind the abstract numbers, harmful stereotypes, and political framings. Through online networks he connected with hundreds of people in places he’d never visited before, and met individuals of all ages, cultural backgrounds, occupations, origins, and means of arriving in the country, whether by harrowing midnight border crossing or some paperwork and a plane ride. Finding American shares a glimpse into the lives and communities of hundreds of Americans from all over the world, through captivating photography and stories told by the participants.