Testing is all important in the life of a photographer. Everyday, I'm testing something new. May it be new locations, new models and most importantly new gear.
For me, when I'm location scouting I'm trying to see how light reacts and how nature reacts to it. Usually I'll keep a scouting camera in my car; for instance, a GoPro does so much justice on the road.
Be prepared for bailing models, it happens. Have a friend ready for adventures, if not be prepared to to snap a selfie. Your just seeing how skin reacts to the lighting set around you, in this case it was a glorious day and the overcast works brilliantly with skin tones, yet the harshness of the Sun gives a natural edge light.
Last but not least, test your equipment. My favorite thing is to bring my little GoPro buddy with me on assignments. From this editorial, I created a promotional video showing the creation of one of Acadia's newest dishes. Testing my video capabilities on my GO helped to show the client an understanding of what direction we could take when we do bring the full production in.