How to photograph beer glasses?

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by rusty2192, Nov 25, 2012.

  1. rusty2192 macrumors 6502a

    Oct 15, 2008
    I have a slightly unique situation that I would like to present to the brain-trust that is the Digital Photography forum on Macrumors.

    I have a rather extensive collection of pint glasses for various beers. One of the local pubs in town has a promotion where Wednesdays are "Pint Nights." Basically you get two free pint glasses when you buy a pitcher of beer. I frequented this for a few years during college, building up a collection of at least 50 different glasses, most of which are unique; only a few duplicates. They have now been boxed up in the attic for a few years since I got married and moved into out house so I'm thinking it may be time to part ways with them. Well, most of them. There are some that I will not get rid of, like my 2 liter Spaten boot :)

    Anyway, to the matter at hand: I am thinking of putting them on ebay to get a little money back from them. What kind of cheap small setup should I put together to take photos of them for the auctions? And does anyone have any advice for photographing empty glasses? Or should I fill them for the shots?

    I have the basic equipment (T2i, assorted lenses, etc.), but not much in the way of lighting. I have a 430EXII, radio triggers, shoot-through/reflective umbrella, and that's about it. Would strobes be better for this or would constant lighting?

    If nothing else, maybe this will be a fun brainstorming session for some of you veterans. :D
  2. r.j.s Moderator emeritus


    Mar 7, 2007
    Since they are for ebay, I'd just use some constant light to light them, probably with a dark background.
  3. Prodo123 macrumors 68020


    Nov 18, 2010
    With beer, you'd want the dark pub-like atmosphere in the photos. For that, you'll want a preferably dark background, wood tabletop, and warm (and I mean warm) natural lighting. Like the common "Soft White" lights, except dim them a bit. You can even use candlelight!
    If you intend on using a flash, use a tungsten filter on the flash to get the warm tone, then bounce the light on the ceiling to get the natural lighting effect.
    I also think that side or rear illumination will work best.

  4. dcains macrumors regular

    Mar 27, 2007
  5. Cliff3 macrumors 68000


    Nov 2, 2007
    SF Bay Area
    The only thing you need beyond what you already have is some sort of background.

    FWIW, I am selling off my Nikon equipment and was taking photos of it today. Here's a photo of my setup, plus one of the gear photos. As you can see, I am using my camera as a commander with an off-camera strobe shooting through an umbrella. I am using a paper background draped over a folding table and I have a white reflector on the side opposite the flash.

    A big piece of white cardboard and a friend (aka: Mr. or Ms. Holder) could easily sub for my fancy reflector.

    Attached Files:

  6. BarryJ macrumors 6502a


    Nov 8, 2007
    Sudbury, Ontario, Canada
    Beer glasses

    I photograph beer glasses like this:


    lol, sorry, I couldn't resist. Good luck with your project.

  7. allisonv7 macrumors 6502

    Jul 20, 2004
    Since you are shooting them for ebay I would just put some white tissue paper in them against a darker background. It'll show off the shape some and any art on the glass will be accentuated.
  8. beavo451 macrumors 6502

    Jun 22, 2006
    Lighting is key (as always). With most glass type subjects, placing the lights to the side and slightly behind the subject works very well.
  9. NZed macrumors 65816


    Jan 24, 2011
    Canada, Eh?
    And since its for eBay. HEAVY EDITING;)

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