Have you always felt challenged while shooting beverages? Those who have been shooting food for some time will tell you that shooting drinks need different expertise. Identifying the ideal/ perfect glassware, planning the nature of the light, the list is endless. Beverages can be of two types – Cold and Hot.

Some of the common challenges faced during shooting beverages are –
  1. Managing those ugly reflections on the glassware
  2. The ice melts very fast
  3. The source of the light and how the light will fall upon the glass
  4. Identifying the perfect glassware
  5. Managing the water droplets on the glass
  6. Proper garnish on the drink
  7. The perfect coffee froth on the top of the coffee

This list can be endless but for this one, we will limit it to coolers only. We clicked for the famous Mango Mastani recently and here are some of the images attached for the preparation phase which slowly made us form the final image.

Indian food and the colour shades/tone

Indian food due to the richness in warm colours often gets stylised with warm complimentary colour shades. So a red, green, black can be often seen in those pictures. Also, the scene is usually crowded with many props and it’s a story in itself. It’s good and there is no way this is a dissing piece for that school of styling, as we also love doing it. We wanted a minimalistic look with muted colours and tried to give a European look to the set-up. I will share the specs of camera settings at the end.

Our tips for shooting beverages as we have learnt –

  1. The first test shot was where we wanted to check the placement of the glasses. This was shot in natural light on a cloudy day and the natural diffused light helped a lot. A lot of homework had gone into selecting the colour and linen. In case you have read the problems normally faced in shooting beverages, then Point 1, 3 and 4 have been taken care of here, after few test shots. 


2. The Mango Mastani had ice cream topping and then on top of that nuts. We had to fix the settings before the ice cream was added and the nuts were around the table. So no time is lost in adding them otherwise …… the ice cream will start melting. Even the mango section was made ready and placed beforehand. For Ice – place the ice cubes after the shot is set and you are ready to click the shutter.


3. In a brief span of time, we had to click as many shots as possible, play around with both the glasses. However, there was one challenge here, particular to this drink – there is a distinct layer of toppings that needs to be captured unlike most of the cold beverages where the play happens on the surface. A Quick tip – check out the length of the glass and angles beforehand as you will have a brief period to shoot this.Most of the times drinks look good at 45 degree angle however, for a cocktail a straight angle shows the drama unfolding inside the glass. 


Here are some of the pictures which were rejected too and it’s worth sharing the reasons with you –

1. In the horizontal shot, the mango section was in front of the glass which spoilt the image.

2.This was a bad vertical shot that fails to emote anything and this is flat as a reflector surface

3. There are too many wrinkles on the surface of the linen and the mango was also placed in the wrong place.

The Exif details which can be helpful to lot – 

Camera – Canon EOS R

Lights – Natural

Lens – Canon RF 50mm, F 1.8 STM 

ISO – 200

F Stop – 6.3

Shutter Speed – 1/5 sec

Tripod – Digitek DTR 520 

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For food recipes you can always refer to our award winning blog Pikturenama and our Instagram handle