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Turning a passion into a way to make a living

Kim Gorjestani creates one-of-a-kind art pieces with old pictures.

Kim Gorjestani thinks in pictures. While that sometimes makes it hard for her to get her message across in words, when it comes to storytelling in pictures she's a pro.

That's why the Rosemount resident decided to start Photolage. The business specializes in using personal photographs to tell stories. Gorjestani uses the photographs to create montages reflecting various themes such as memorials, retirement, anniversaries, graduations or birthdays.

"My heart is really into documenting family histories," said Gorjestani of her reason for creating the montages.

Gorjestani, who has experience working as a graphic designer, said she has been making similar montages for her family and friends for years. Only this year did the idea sink in that she could do it as a job.

"It's something I've done my whole life," said Gorjestani.

While starting her own business has been a leap of faith, Gorjestani said so far things are going well. To get started on a project, Gorjestani works with families or friends to go through photographs and organize them into categories that make sense. With the selected photos she then creates a one-of-a-kind piece of art.

"I want to unite families through photos and stories," said Gorjestani.

While most projects are enjoyable for Gorjestani, creating pieces to honor loved ones that have died has turned into a passion. Over the past year Gorjestani has done a number of montages as memorials or tributes. And while it can be emotionally difficult, Gorjestani said providing the service for families has been fulfilling.

"I want to honor those people and give the family something to remember them by," said Gorjestani.

Furthermore, Gorjestani said she has really enjoyed putting together pieces that honor people in service related fields such as the military, police, firefighters and teachers.

"My family is full of people with military backgrounds and firefighters and police and I just don't think we give them enough credit for what they do," said Gorjestani.

Since starting Gorjestani said business has progressively picked up. Gorjestani said she's enjoying the work but worries she may get too busy to be able to help everyone who contacts her. That's a problem for another day, though, and for now Gorjestani is just happy to be making a living doing something she's passionate about.

To learn more about Photolage visit or call 651-321-3168.

Emily Zimmer
Emily Zimmer has worked as a staff writer for the Rosemount Town Pages since 2007. She has a degree in journalism from Minnesota State University, Mankato. Outside of work, Emily enjoys running, reading and gardening. You can follow Emily's gardening adventures at the Areavoices blog East of Weedin'
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