I picked up a bottle of this Makers 46. Touted as a specialty product from Makers Mark, it's crafted differently and bottled during the winter months.
I wanted to do a representation of this "on the rocks" The printing is directly on the bottle and presented some unique challenges compared to a paper labeled bottle. Lighting the graphics created glare and reflections on the glass. The solution was to do a blend of several different images to get the bottle to look good as well as the printing.
First, the set.
The "rocks" used in the image are a bit of a trick of perspective. To get a stacked, layered deep look, I needed rocks at different levels. I do not need a continuous field of rocks to do this, as you can only see some rocks at a time when looking from the front.
Now if I just made an image of the bottle, the contents would look dark. Using a contoured card made specifically for the profile of this bottle, I am able to get light to shine through just the content part of the bottle. From behind it looks like this:
I place it at an angle behind the bottle. This is looking straight from above. The light comes from the right side.
And here is a view looking back to the light.
Once everything was setup in place, the camera mounted on a tripod and frame, I made several images.
I took parts of the 4 images below to make one final image of the bottle. You can see how I had to use a small reflector to highlight different parts.
I also added in a background from the winter to give the bottle a sense of place. The bits of snow were taken from the original background image and added to the rocks from the set.
Finally, I was originally able to get a fairly well lit image in just one shot, but I had to remove many reflections in the bottle. Here is what that looked like.
I liked the out of focus background and shimmering highlight running through the contents of the bottle.