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Product photography: How the pros do it - The Splash Technique

Posted by Mandy Gleason on
Product photography: How the pros do it - The Splash Technique

Alright beautiful people. You've told me you need more product photography tips, so let's talk about The Splash. The Splash is the older sibling of the sprinkle and pour techniques (like, legal drinking age older) and is super useful this time of year when snapping cozy photos of bourbon, cider, and hot chocolate.

To show you exactly how to set up your scene and DSLR camera (including timer, shutter, and flash settings), I've teamed up with product/wedding/pet/everything photographer Jamie Cobb of Oklahoma-based PhotoVille (a killer photo booth rental company with booths in Dallas, LA, and OKC) to bring you a less-than-5-minute video walkthrough featuring Jamie herself. The best part? The same setup and camera settings will let you capture sprinkle, pour, and drizzle shots just as easily! And you DON'T need an assistant to make it happen! That's what timers are for, silly.

Oh and don't worry about writing down her equipment or camera settings - I've copied them right here at the bottom.

Full disclosure: you pretty much have to have a DSLR camera to capture this technique properly. Phone cameras just aren't there yet. But don't worry if you're a phone photog - I've got plenty of tutorials coming your way very soon!

 

 

The setup:

  1. Pair two backdrops in an L-shape. I’m clearly partial to Replica Surfaces held together with Replica Stands.
  2. Place a glass near the front of your horizontal Surface. This will keep the vertical Surface out of focus and give your photo the most depth. Any glass should work so just pick one that suits the beverage you’re using.
  3. Fill the glass nearly to the top to allow a big splash. Use room temperature liquid to avoid frost forming on the glass.
  4. Set your camera to shoot horizontally. This allows you to crop photos into square or vertical orientations based on your needs.
  5. If shooting alone, set the self timer for 10 seconds. Walk into shot. Once timer beeps its final beep, drop the object into the drink. Try a berry, large olive, thick citrus wedge, or cinnamon stick. The heavier the object, the bigger the splash.
  6. Repeat as many times as necessary to get a splash you love. If using Replica Surfaces, they’ll wipe clean splash after splash.

 

Camera settings:

Shutter speed 125

ISO 400 S-stop 4

Flash 1/128

 

Jamie's equipment:

Camera: Fujifilm X-T3

Flash transmitter: Flashpoint R2

Speedlight: Flashpoint

Light stands: Manfroto 8ft column stands

Tripod: Manfroto

Surfaces: Weathered Wood and Slate Replica Surfaces

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3 comments

  • KAthy on

    I’m new to using a DSLR camera. Excited to learn

  • Melody on

    This was so great and VERY helpful! I can’t wait to give it a try. Thank you!

  • Erica on

    Thanks for the tips! I plan on using this one as well as the other posts that you’ll be doing soon!

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