The gods must be crazy
This photography challenge must have a strange title if you aren’t aware of the 1980 cult classic film The Gods Must be Crazy.
If you’re wondering what coke bottle photography has to do with a 1980 South African film then please let me explain.
The film begins in Botswana, specifically the Kalahari Desert, far away from western civilisation. One day, a glass Coca-Cola bottle is carelessly thrown out of an airplane by a pilot and falls to Earth unbroken.
The bottle is found by a tribe of Ju’/Hoansi bushmen who assume this strange artefact is a “present” from the gods.
The tribe begins to find many different uses for the bottle but unlike other bounties like animals and plants there is only one glass bottle, which causes unforeseen conflict within the tribe.
Our hero Xi confers with elders and agrees to make a pilgrimage to the edge of the world and dispose of the supposedly cursed thing.
Watch the rest of the film to see what happens to Xi. I promise you it’s worth watching.
The coke bottle Photography challenge
This challenge is about photographing a glass Coke bottle in as many creative different ways as you can.
If you don’t have a coke bottle the any clear glass bottle will do, preferably one with an interesting design. Make sure you remove all labels and glue from the bottle first and when you’re finished be sure to recycle it.
Ways to photograph a Coke bottle
This is a particularly good project as it makes you think about how many different ways a single object can be approached photographically.
It’s entirely up to you how you photograph the bottle but be sure to experiment with as many different techniques as you can.
Here’s a few ideas to get you started.
Light and Shadow
Whether you’re photographing your coke bottle using artificial light or daylight glass make really interesting shadows.
If you’re photographing using natural light try doing it late afternoon to capture long shadows.
Think about the surfaces the shadows fall on and their colours and textures.
Photographing inside the coke bottle
The advantage of using a camera phone is that it’s much easier to fit your lens into the bottle to photograph inside.
Think about where you put your bottle when you photograph inside it as the location will dramatically change the image.
Landscape inside a coke bottle
This is fun to do when you are out for a walk or even looking out of your window. Create a landscape inside your Coke bottle by holding and photographing horizontally.
Try and put the horizon through the middle of the bottle to make the most of of the distortions.
Photographing just on a table
You can’t beat keeping it simple. Find a table or empty surface and photograph your bottle from as many angles as you can.
The more interesting the surface the better so perhaps think about using table cloths or textured mats.