A Michelin Star Restaurant kinda weekend

I hope everyone had a lovely weekend!

After a very rough week, the weekend was totally necessary to decompress.

On Friday, per tradition, my boyfriend and I had a phenomenal date night at COI here in San Francisco. It was our first time… and the timing could not have been more perfect with everything going on in life.

It’s a Two Michelin Starred restaurant focusing on Californian Cuisine with a Japanese and French twist.

{ sneak peak inside what we ate at Coi in San Francisco // champagne at shannon's }
{ a sneak peek into Coi // the 4th course “Ocean Trout” was my fave & the pairing was heavenly}

We were seated in a cozy corner table {trust me and request this one if you go with your beau}, and enjoyed an adventurous 10 course dinner. I added the wine pairing to it, and each pairing was perfect.

In fact, one thing that really got me in love with wine was pairings. A good pairing means the wine will make the food taste better with each sip, and the food will make the wine taste better with every bite.

The next day, things get a little exciting…

I have now re-entered the dark side { !!!!!!! }

{ shannon silver, new hair // champagne at shannon's }

{ as seen on snap :: shnnnlynn // wearing Flynn Skye – majorly digging mock necks rn}

I am so stoked about this. Soooo real talk, about a year ago, I decided to lighten things up and do a tortoiseshell balayage. Well, long story short, it was a nightmare. Not only did the procedure take 6 hours {I’m not even kidding, you can ask my boyfriend}, it was outrageously expensive, and my hair looked terrible & brassy AF.

I was so scarred from that experience that I never got it fixed…. but I hated my hair. Don’t get me wrong, I love the length but I absolutely hated the colour and had to use a purple shampoo to keep things from going dull and mousy.

I finally got fed up. Desperate for a change, I texted my girl McKenzie {who I wish I knew before all the mess}, and we talked duration of time, price, and exactly what I wanted.

Well, two hours later, and an extremely reasonable price later, my hair was precisely what I wanted: Dark espresso brown, with a cool tint – bye, bye brass!

{ shannon silver on snapchat // @shnnnlynn }

{ new and waaaaay improved ASA snap}

She hand painted it balayage style, and used a glossy finish vs a matte finish to keep it from that “just been dyed look”

And to be honest, this is the happiest I have EVER been with my hair. Ever.

It looks phenomenal and she did such a rad job. She truly listened to me, and told me everything she was doing throughout the process.

Her salon, Head Spa, is my FAVOURITE in San Francisco. Best blow outs, best cuts, best colour – I will NOT go anywhere else.

Afterwards, we got brunch with Ryan, who’s photography you see often on the blog. I will be posting a very real, raw, rant soon but long story short, I realized I needed to step things up and I am sick of coasting. One thing in particular being my photography, so last week, I asked Ryan if we could meet this weekend and talk all things photography.

We also discussed our upcoming series on the blog – think photography and editting tips for bloggers and websites – so it was a productive brunch meeting! To be real, I think all meetings should involve a good meal and rose bubbly!

Starting last week, I am working really hard on my photography. I’ve really been just settling with things and I’m ready to tackle my camera {NOT iPhone} & take my photography and editing skills to the next level.

I will be completely honest with you, I have NO IDEA what I am doing… yet. However, I will admit, everything makes sense so it’s a lot of practice until perfection.

For anyone in a photography boat similar as me, I wanted to post some tips to help you get started, since I know and understand how intimidating it can be.

.. and it’s as raw & candid as can be since I am living & doing it right now.

Literally, before last week, I knew 0% about cameras, and now i know 1%? So it’s progress, i suppose.

Let’s learn together! {please be easy on me!}

{ shannon silver outside of brandy melville in san francisco // champagne at shannon's }

⚜ 1. Teach yourself the Basics

First and foremost, teach yourself the bare bones basics. Understand how the parts of the camera works, and most importantly, understand the relationship between Aperture, Shutter Speed, and ISO aka the Exposure Triangle.

By teaching yourself these basics, it will really help you comprehend how to apply them…. and make it much easier to understand the lingo when you apply them.

Posts that helped me a LOT are here + here {fantastic blog as a whole} + here + here

And these Youtube vid’s: herehere + here

⚜ 2. Purchase this book ASAP {says Ryan!}


This was Ryan’s advice to me. He urged me to buy the Art of Photography by Bruce Barnbaum and get an idea on what all a camera is capable of, and use it to discover the vibes I am going for.

I also recommend buying other books, think coffee or cookbooks {perfect way to justify the purchase 😉 } of photography you truly love. This will help you really see zone on on what appeals to you and why.

Some of my favourites include:

Angels by Russell James
Herb by Melissa Parks, Laurei Wolf & the Herb Team
Feel Good Food by Giada de Laurentiis

⚜ 3. V to the S to the C to the O.

VSCO.

Okay, I am loving this app. Majorly. In fact, Kate told me to get this back in December, and I finally took the plunge… & I should of listened earlier since her photos are bomb af.

Not only do I use it for my phone, but now Photoshop. It makes editing the photos a breeze.

As far as Instagram, I edit all my photos the same for the most part {I can make a full blown post on this if you want – I have a major process and use 2 apps}, so I hope to now do the same with photoshop.

I purchased Looks 01 & 05 – I felt that they were the vibes I was going for, and are in line with what I have in mind for future projects.

Be sure to watch the video tutorials. They are VERY easy to use, and I already created a few saved presets for easy access to try and keep things symmetrical throughout the blog…. stay tuned!

{ Erik Schuchard // Champagne at Shannon's }

⚜ 4. Click, Click, Flash. Constantly.

This one is tough for the perfectionist in me, but snap photos constantly. Take the basics you’ve learned and apply them. There is only so much reading you can do, but you will truly learn the most by executing.

Take photos of your bed, your kitchen, your cat {Lucy wants to break the internet so I’m just tryin’ to help}, your coffee, apples on the counter, hell even your hand, whatevs… anything and everything.

Then… take it one step further. See what photos you like and which ones not so much and most importantly, see WHY. By understanding the basics in step 1 & later applying them, you can slowly start to create and figure out your camera style.

⚜ 5. Stick with it!

Nothing great happens overnight. Stick with it and keep learning. This advice is one I am telling myself constantly too. Make it a pact to take at least 10 decent photos a day…. even if that means taking over 100 duds.

Practice makes perfect!

{ shannon silver outside of brandy melville in san francisco // champagne at shannon's }

Again, I’m obviously NOT an expert, but this is the advice I have given myself… with the help of my extremely talented photographer friend, Ryan.

How about you guys… anyone have any tips?! The more the better! Let’s bring my 1% up to a 10% this week 😉

Talk soon!

x Shannon

 

Shop my favourite mocknecks as of late ::

about essellesse

essellesse is a lazy luxury lifestyle platform by Shannon Silver focusing on everything that’s important to living your best life – great food, wine, travel, vintage style, fitness and skincare. essellesse evokes a style of lazy luxury that’s fun, intimate, and easy breezy.