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Your Holiday Makeup Tutorial

With the holidays fast approaching and parties to get fancied up for, we reached out to one of our favourite local makeup artists, Leigh Dickson, for a how-to on her latest holiday look. She breaks down this glamorous style in 8 easy steps.

Leigh Dickson Makeup Tutorial


  1. Start by applying a base to the eyelid, preferably using a primer shade close to your skin tone.
  2. Using a creamy black eye pencil roughly map out where you would normally draw a cat eye. Extend the product from the lower lash line towards the eyebrow. Be careful not to apply too much at this point and don’t worry about making it perfect, we’re going to smudge it out!  3) Next using a fluffy blending brush gently smoke out that liner. Use small motions and blend it towards the crease and onto the eyelid.
  3. Next using a fluffy blending brush gently smoke out that liner. Use small motions and blend it towards the crease and onto the eyelid.
  4.  Using a light skin toned shimmery shadow highlight the brow bone and inner corner of the eye, above the tear duct.
  5. Now apply a warm dark brown shadow on top of the black base you previously applied. Make sure to blend out the edges to keep the look soft.
  6. To add a metallic pop take a clean shadow brush and wet it. Then dip the brush in a loose pigment, tap off the excess on the brush then apply by patting the product onto the lid and under the lower lash line. Wetting the brush gives the pigment a foiled more metallic look!
  7. Line the waterline using a black eye pencil.
  8. Apply mascara to upper and lower lashes and false lashes if desired. And you’re done!

– MAC Paint Pot “Painterly” (eyelid primer)
– NYX Jumbo Pencil “Black Bean”
– Saucebox Cosmetics “Rain” eyeshadow (brow and inner corner highlight)
– MAC eyeshadow “Embark” (dark brown)
– MAC pigment “Melon” (metallic rose gold)
– MAC eye pencil “Defiantly Black”
– Geisha Ink black mascara
– MAC lashes #48
– Lime Crime Cosmetics velveteen lipstick “Red Velvet”

Follow her for more awesome tutorials on instagram @leighdicksonsartistry

New Website

I am extremely excited and proud to announce the launch of my brand new website! The amazingly talented team at Epix Studios customized and developed this beautiful space for me to showcase my work and creative services. I invite you take a look around, stop by our galleries, and drop us a line to say hello and let us know what you think!

The Thousand Words

I’ve started a new personal project “The Thousand Words” Each episode an individual is featured sharing the meaning and story behind their most valued/treasured printed photograph. In this first video, Brock talks about owning a Yousuf Karsh original, but that it’s sentimental value is equally as significant as the famous photographer who took it.

Coffins, Cookies and Chai

This time two years ago I was exploring India. In some ways it feels like years ago, but simultaneously somehow also feels like just a blink of an eye. Time sure likes to play tricks..

One of my favourite moments travelling along the Southern Coast of India was in Kerala. My friend and I spent a few days in a little town and our guest house was near a row of coffin makers “shops”. Every day we walked by we were both fascinated by them, and finally one day we stopped and said hello and asked to photograph the craftsman. He didn’t speak a word of English, but his smile and soft demeanour made him so approachable.

While we were photographing him it started to rain, and very quickly it began to pour.. full on India monsoon style. The man’s wife wandered over to us and by using hand gestures, invited us inside for tea and out of the rain. She walked us into their home, which was tucked behind the “storefront” She sat us on a bed (there was no couch) turned on their little TV and another man came in and put the channel onto the only one showing something American, and it happened to be Good Will Hunting. Their kindness and generosity was overwhelming, and her chai was the most delicious I tasted in India, but it was difficult not to notice the coffin and wooden crosses half finished sitting on another bed just beside us. My friend and I got the nervous giggles when we were alone in the room for a moment and she whispered to me, “the next thing you know, we wake up in that coffin!”

The next thing we knew, we were actually totally awake (thank you chai) and she lead us back into her kitchen and then out through the back to a little mini farm. It was this amazing little house and it was easy to see she was so proud and happy to share and show us. No wonder the chai was so good, it had fresh goats milk.

The rain had subsided by then, so she sent us on our way with a truly memorable moment that had us full of cookies and tea, but also this other warm fuzzy feeling that I get just thinking about it. No words that any of us could understand were exchanged the entire time, I wish I could have learned more about them, but we communicated with smiles and nods, and that was enough.










Squamish Fest- Georgia Straight Cover

Behind the scenes of the cover shoot for this week’s Georgia Straight. Featured are local musicians playing the upcoming Squamish Festival, Louise Burns, Sleepy Tom, My Gay Husband, Cityreal, and Rykka.

Check out the feature in print or online HERE.

Thanks as always to the Georgia Straight for the fun gig. Big thanks for Vicky Canning for the behind the scenes photos and to Brock McFarlane who often takes time to assist me on shoots when his real job is mastering music. Appreciation to everyone for making this come together so seamlessly.






Jim Byrnes

There is something magical about being in the presence of a true storyteller. Someone who makes you want to stop everything you’re doing, pull up a chair and take in every word. While I couldn’t stop the photo shoot with Jim Byrnes altogether, I also couldn’t help myself from putting the camera down from time to time either.

Not only did I have the honour of taking portraits of this legendary blues musician, I was simultaneously gifted a solo concert, alone in my studio. I photographed him as he played and observed how seamlessly he and his guitar worked together, as if they were one. After he played and the room fell silent, I didn’t know how to respond beyond picking my jaw up off the floor. I don’t even remember what I did, I may have clapped, or said “wow” I know that whatever it was, couldn’t have done his performance any justice.

His new album is available on Black Hen Music.

jim-byrnes-playing-guitar-leigh-righton-photo jim-byrnes-portrait-leigh-righton-photo

Marc Maron Portrait wins Applied Arts Award

How cool to find out that an image from my personal project, a photo series documenting comedian Marc Maron, has won a photography award in the 2014 Applied Arts annual photography competition.

I’m so grateful to Maron for letting me creep around him every so often with a camera, and for trusting me to capture him in even his quieter moments.



We love watching our clients excited reactions after they’ve received their custom makeup and hair styling. They look and feel wonderful and we get to photograph them styled top to bottom with their most coveted looks.The purpose of sharing these transformations is simply to show the process. All women, not just models, can enjoy the experience of a fully designed photo shoot and have beautiful images to treasure for years to come.

Jan-Transformation Hilda-Transformation Erin-Transformation Dara-Transformation Audrey-Transformation Aileen-Transformation Natalie-Transformation meagan-Transformation Jill-Transformation

Caught in the Wind

I came across a funny set of photos I took when I was on the ferry recently.  A few areas of the deck created a crazy wind tunnels which were kind of funny to walk through.  I pulled out my camera so I could get a photo of myself battling the overpowering winds and it made me laugh so hard, I decided to catch as many people as I could for the next 20 mins.  Here’s what kept me entertained.  The last one is me, I figured it was only fair.

Windy Hair 1


Colour Droplet Portraits

Sometimes I get requests from clients to do something special for their shoot and I’m asked to get extra creative in some way.  Along with the freedom to explore and experiment is also the possibility of a disappointing outcome. But as all creatives know (if you’ve prepared your client) it’s worth the risk for those magical moments when everything just clicks.I had this concept rolling around for some time, but couldn’t think of the right image to test on.  So it sat collecting dust in the back of my mind.  When Erin (from last week’s post) approached me and was looking to do something artsy and different, it actually didn’t occur to me immediately that this idea and Erin were an obvious match.  A few days before our session I finally made the connection, and it just made so much sense! It seemed like the idea was just waiting for her.


The Process:

To create these images I printed out a few portraits of Erin, I placed a casserole dish filled with water on top of the print, and used food colouring droplets to create these beautiful swirls of colour around her.  I photographed the combination of the two from above and could barely keep my finger firing the trigger fast enough. The movement of the droplets in the water was so rapid it made for so many incredible compositions.  Deciding on which colour combination and composition was a whole other ballgame.  This was so much fun to do I could hardly convince myself to stop after hundreds of images.  I am so happy with the results and am excited to finally share them.

Photography: Leigh Righton

Makeup: Christine Jairamsingh