testing: lens + lighting

I spent this weekend with my mom, enjoying a staycation at a hotel here in Montreal, while my apartment played host to our friend Zach's bachelor party.

My mom and I walked, ate, drank and talked the weekend away, catching up as I showed her my favourite food + drink spots in the city (Nouveau Palais, The Sparrow, Croissanterie Figaro)  and discovered some new ones (Gros Jambon, Voro).

Another thing I did this weekend was test out a new lens. This macro lens is absolutely incredible and is at the top of my wish list. I know that it will complement the rest of my kit, and help me take better detail shots, especially of smaller items such as jewellery and decor.

As my mom and I wandered, I tested the lens in a variety of lighting conditions, focusing on all sorts of different textures, from Moroccan tea glasses to Japanese silks.

It's also a beautiful lens for farther away subjects.

And delicious subjects too.

And, finally, I was able to take decent photos of my wedding and engagement rings. This was awesome, but also served as a reminder that I desperately need to polish them!

We also stopped by Spice Station, a fantastic little boutique in Mile End that sells speciality spices, herbs, teas, salts, and sugars at reasonable prices.

Then, in the afternoon afternoon, I tested out some new makeup products that I'll be using for one of my next Runway to Real Life features. This gold liquid makeup is a bit finicky, and I needed to see how it would photograph before creating the look for my model (I learned that I'll have to apply it much more generously). Brian obliged by taking some test shots for me:

... and then took a few more photos just for fun. It's a good exercise for photographers to put themselves in front of the camera and remember how uncomfortable how it can feel.

And then remember how much more fun it is when you feel relaxed!