This shot was taken for an assignment for a photography hangout I take part in on Google+. The idea was to shoot a creative advertisement style cocktail shot that somehow captured emotion.


After the assignment was given I quickly went to our liqueur cabinet where we also happen to store glasses and my eye was drawn right away to the margarita glasses we had. I think they’re hand made as they’re not all exact a not perfectly straight. I also wanted a little umbrella, this is a cocktail shot! The final touch was the smoke to add some sort of mood to the image.


To get the final shot I made about 9 exposures which I masked together in Photoshop. I first took a shot of the glass by itself. Another shot with the added umbrella and then several with the smoke since it kept changing and I wanted to blend a few of the different smoke movements into the single image.

The smoke was made with dry ice. I had a huge chunk and had to break it into little pieces to drop into the liquid which was water with some blue food coloring. This shot was done with 3 studio strobes.

I had one light below and behind aiming at the background with a red gel. The glass was sitting on a DIY shooting table with piece of glass painted white on one side. The purple color on the table was achieved from the red reflecting off the background.

The main light was in front and below with a DIY strip box aiming up and reflected off a piece of foam core hung above the subject. The 3rd, and last, light was behind and to the right with a DIY snoot to aim directly at the glass to brighten it up from behind.

Please also find below this final image a few bts(behind the scenes) shots I took.

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Here are some BTS (Behind the scenes) shots of my setup. This first shot shows the strobe below and behind with the red gel. I also placed a piece of thin nylon fabric to diffuse the light by about 2 stops.The background is the the left in this image. That reflector was placed on the right of the subject to help reflect more light but also to keep it somewhat diffused. For the table I just set my glass on 2 overturned children chairs which the correct height I was after.

This shot shows a better over all view. The main light in front was attached to a boom to hold it low to the ground.

This final shot is just another angle of the overall shot.

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