Less Is More

A few snapshots from a recent explorations around Toronto. I've really enjoyed taking photos of minimalistic aspects with character. Also, I aim to create all my photos bright and with life. Enjoy. 

Janine Maral

Fresh Reads Vol. 3

It's been ages since I've done one of these and recently, I've discovered and really loving these new reads so, I had to share.

Youtube: Refinery29
How is Refinery29 so perfect? Their Youtube channel deserves everything. You can tell how much effort they put into it. My favourite series right now is their Trend Takeout series where they show you how to style one piece three ways. It's pretty impressive.

Magazine: Conde Nast Traveler

So, when I went away on my trip, I randomly picked up this magazine from the shelf to give it a read on my flight. I've never read the magazine except just followed them on twitter. I think it is now my new favourite magazine ever and the reason being is it has quality content with great writing and articles. Seriously, give it a read, I dig it.

Book: Berlin Street Style
The reason I originally purchased this book was for decor and some style inspiration. But I've actually read some of it and they give great fashion tips that will up your street-style-game. Berlin is also one of my favourite cities so it was fitting that I bought this book.

Website: H&M Life
If you don't know already, H&M is one of my favourite go-to stores to shop at and I never even knew they had their own "lifestyle" blog/website. They put up lovely posts and now, I always keep that tab open.

Blog: Paris In Four Months
If you are looking for a blog with fantastic photography, something that is inspiring and motivational, with quality content, this is it. I can never and will never get over how perfect Paris In Four Months is. Such a wonderful blog!

What have been your favourite new reads?
Janine Maral


I get a lot of inspiration from instagram. (haha, INSpiration / INStagram).
Right now I've been completely obsessed with bright photos with life. Each photo in this collage tells a story and somehow they all work together through the colour scheme, through what each photo has to offer. 
What have you been inspired by lately?

Janine Maral

My Carry-On Bag & Everything In It

This next week is going to be pretty exciting because I'll be off to La La Land AKA Los Angeles. I'm pretty pumped because LA is one of my favourite cities in the world. I have a list of places I want to visit that I've never been to before and a bunch of places to try different foods. 

When I travel, the items in my carry on bag always change. This time, I am sharing literally everything in my bag giving you an in depth look at what is in my carry on bag!

For starters, I bought a new carry on bag and it is everything I could ever ask for. I purchased the Herschel Harvest Tote in all black and the reason why I love this tote so much is because it has a fur lined slot for my laptop, other mini compartments and is big enough and slim enough to carry around with me everywhere I go. The quality of the bag is durable and something I know I'll be using for years. Now, let's get into the actually items.

Here I have the basic necessities: my passport, my wallet and my boarding pass.

Beauty & Skin Care
My trio is my holy grail. To keep it short and sweet, my trio right now consists of my Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer in Vanilla, Benefit's They're Real Mascara, and the Too Faced Shadow Insurance Primer in Champagne. I keep these in my carry on as a touch up for when I get off the plane (so I don't look like a train wreck).

I also bring a hand disinfectant, a mini vaseline tube, a travel Sugar lip balm lip therapy, and my travalo which carries my favourite perfume of the moment.

My technology gear is way more important than anything else in my bag (except for my basic necessities). I also have a trio for my technology.

  • Canon T4i: First, my DSLR camera along with my 50mm f1.8 lens, the 18-55mm kit lens, its charger, the cases and the cord connecting it to my laptop.
  • Macbook Pro: My second tech necessity while flying is my laptop. I often use this on my flight to write blog posts since most of the time, there isn't that great of a wifi connection. I will also bring the charger and its cases.
  • iPhone 6: Although my phone will mostly be on airplane mode, I still bring it in case of emergency. I also like to use the camera that comes with the iPhone to take photos for Instagram (obviously). Along with my iPhone, I bring its charger and earbuds.

Now, the last part of the technology section are my Frends headphones. I'll often wear these on the airplane to cancel out any noises and listen to music but if its just a quick trip and I don't have much room in my bag, I won't bring these at all and I'll just use my earbuds.

Other Random Goodies
This category is everything and anything that is not included in any other category. Items in this section are an extra pair of socks, the book I am currently reading which is The Happiness Project, a notebook to jot down thoughts and keep a schedule of each day, a scarf that can double up as a mini blanket if it gets chilly and a watch to keep track of time. 

So there it is! That is what is in my carry on bag. Nothing quirky, just the usual. What do you carry in your bag when you travel?
Janine Maral

Instagram Accounts I Adore

Instagram might be my new favourite social media network. In fact, it is.
Well on Instagram, I follow a lot of people and I’m always on the hunt for new instagram accounts to follow. I’m pretty picky when it comes to posting photos myself on instagram. I have to edit it a certain way, and make sure each photo I post works with my theme. It’s a hard knock life. When I see other accounts that do a great job at this, I learn from that and it makes me want to continue posting photos and get better at it. 

So far, I’ve found so many awesome accounts that I love and have been loving. These are all accounts with quality photos that work seamlessly in their instagram theme and accounts that I look up to.

What are some of your favourite Instagram accounts?
Janine Maral

Learning About Photography

Let’s talk photography, the art of taking a photo.

I’ve never avidly been into photography. Investing in a DSLR never occurred to me until I started this blog. Before then, I enjoyed taking photos on my iPhone, which at the time was an iPhone 4s. I didn’t see the point in spending money for a point-and-shoot camera, moreover a DSLR.

Once I started investing more time into my blog, four months later I decided to invest in a camera. And so, I purchased my first DSLR, the Canon T4i, which is what I use today along with the kit lens, 18-55mm. 

After being part of this blogging community for a little more than two years now, I’ve realized the value in a good photo. Visuals are what attract me to most blogs so I figure that is the same case for many other readers out there. Many of the blogs I read have awesome photos and professional cameras. So, I figure It’s time to purchase a new lens but not only that, it is time to learn more about my camera.

I talk to many individuals who are into photography and they all say the same thing, “It’s not the camera, It’s the photographer.” As I continue to practice photography with my beginner DSLR and kit lens, I begin to realize how true these statements are. Photography is an art, and we must practice to improve. Of course the tools are a big part, but how you construct an image is what brings it to life. 

All this time, I’ve been photographing using a preset auto setting with no flash because that was what worked best for me. I was basically using it as a point-and-shoot, except an upgraded version. What’s the point of a DSLR if you are not taking full advantage of it’s capabilities? Through research, only now have I just fully understand what an ISO was or how important the shutter speed is. I kind of had an idea of what the F-stop was but I never played around with it.

Blog posts that have taught me a lot about photography:
+ My Camera

To help me improve my photography skills and photos, I did in fact, purchase a new lens, the Canon 50mm f1.8. It is simply affordable with an excellent purpose. I've heard great things about this lens and I figure I'll learn how to use a prime lens that's not too pricey and quite beginner before I purchase more advanced lenses. 

I must also mention, to take an awesome photo you don’t need a DSLR. Like I mentioned before, it’s mostly the photographer. You can take some great photos with a simple device like a smart phone. In fact, I sometimes feel as if my iPhone 6 takes better photos than my DSLR in ways such as capturing light in a photo or picking up a colour in the image. 

All that being said, I can’t wait to improve my photography skills and actually learn the art of taking a photo. I want to make sure that each photo I take and post on my blog has had effort put into it. 

Janine Maral

Cities I Want To Visit In 2015

Travelling is one of my passions and one of my goals this year is to go to a place or places I have never been to, a new city to explore. Here are my top 5 cities I want to visit in 2015.

1. Chicago
Chicago has been on my mind for a while now. I don't know what aspect about the city calls my name. Maybe it's the fact that it's kind of like a mix of Toronto and New York (so I hear) or because I need to explore a different city vibe in my life. All I really know is that I want to go there this year.

2. Vancouver
Besides Montreal and Toronto, I've never been anywhere else in Canada. Vancouver seems like the next ideal destination to explore as it seems to have the stereotypical Canadian feels and nature while also having a city taste.  

3. San Fransisco
I have a road trip planned that I'll one day drive from Vancouver to San Fran. This city just seems like an amazing place to visit and explore, I mean, look at the colourful houses! I've heard great things about San Fran and going there would be amazing.

4. Milan
Milan, of course. One of the world's fashion capitals. I've been to many cities in Italy and once was so close to visiting Milan but never did. Something about Milan makes it seem unique, unlike any other city. Please, take me there this year!

5. Stockholm
Stockholm seems like a city with lots of character. I imagine it as one of those cities that look like a movie set, pretty and put together. That's really all I can say about it. I don't know anything else about Stockholm except for the fact that I want to go there.

Where Do You Want To Visit This Year?
Janine Maral
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