Squeeze the creative juice out of your photography with conceptual splashes

Post by
Arlene Hildago
Squeeze the creative juice out of your photography with conceptual splashes

Creating an eye-catching splash is a fun and easy way to capture the freshness of your favorite beverages. Incorporating some movement into food photography is always a great technique to catch your audiences eye, especially when it involves vibrant colors that pop like fresh orange juice.

It might look sophisticated but you don't need a complicated setup to pull off this commercial technique.

Want to find out how to do it? Talented Russian photographer Elena is showing us how to you can achieve this conceptual motion effect right from your home studio or living room set up.

Let's plunge right in!

Planning through Inspiration and Sketches

We challenged Elena to recreate a commercial effect from home and she was drawn to the concept of drinks with movement and splashes.

After finding several image references in Google, analyzing the light, composition, and potential techniques, Elena chose an orange juice example to use for reference.

Setting up the shoot

Sourcing the Props

To recreate her reference image Elena used the following items

Setting up the Equipment

To produce the image Elena set up the following equipment in her home:

Basic Lighting Scheme

To shoot the glass and splash, Elena lit the milky acrylic glass background with the artificial light from behind and set its power to maximum. She applied the yellow and red filters on the nozzle of the artificial light to create a bright orange affect on the background.

A whiteboard was used as a reflector and fixed to the front-right corner of the glass.

Highlighting the orange juice packaging required a slightly different set up with the artificial light to the rear-left of the set and reflector was fixed to the front-right corner of the product.

Basic Lighting Scheme
Light scheme for highlighting juice packaging

Camera Settings

Shutter Speed: 1/2000

Aperture: F9

ISO: 100

Focusing: Manual

Creating a Splash

To create the splashes Elena simply moved the glass in different directions around with her gloved hand. It is a technique that takes some experimentation as there's no such thing as just one kind of splash. You're going to get a different type for every movement. That's why liquid is so interesting to photograph because it's uncontrolled and can create elaborate patterns in the air.

Tips for capturing the perfect splash

Post Production and Editing

Elena did her post-production and editing in Adobe Lightroom Classic and Adobe Photoshop.

Using a focus stacking technique enabled her to select all the appropriate photos and stick them together through layers and masks in Adobe Photoshop.

Focus stacking or focus blending is where you take a series of images with your camera, each of which focuses at a different spot in your composition. This allows you to blend them together afterwards to create make a single image where the entire thing is in focus.

Once the image was composed in Photoshop, Elena adjusted white balance, sharpness, colors, saturation, dark and light areas corrections in Adobe Lightroom Classic

Finished Image

The juice splashes in this picture scream thirst-quenching! We hope you've been inspired to give your creative juices a little more room to move with this tutorial, it just goes to show that you can create amazing things from home if you are resourceful!

Thanks to Elena for contributing this great tutorial. To see more of her work you can find her on Instagram at @elena_foodart

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