There is something very sexy about espresso; it is a sensuous drink. Even the equipment is sexy. One piece of equipment is called a Naked Portafilter! When you pull a shot using a Naked Portafilter, the espresso collects visibly at the center of the filter then streams seductively into the brewing pitcher or shot glass.
Vaneli’s asked me to take some photographs of espresso as it flows from a Naked Portafilter and I tried to do it there a couple of weeks ago but was disappointed in my results because of focus issues and my failure to notice that the espresso machine we used had some spots and blotches that were not easily removed in Photoshop. After that photo session, Gene Lemos of Vaneli’s gave me my very own Naked Portafilter. He also told me that a perfect Naked Portafilter shot would coalesce to the center and drip in a single stream with beautiful tiger stripes. They have asked me to come back and try again for a perfect naked portafilter shot.
I decided to try it myself at home before going back to Vaneli’s so that I would be better prepared. One of the things I had to do was to work on tamping the grounds perfectly because if they’re not perfectly tamped, the espresso drips from several places instead of just streaming from the center. I think I managed to capture that with this effort, and while it’s not perfect, the tiger stripes are beautiful. At least I have some practice so I’ll have more confidence and hopefully more success when I return to Vaneli’s Thursday to try again.
I used the macro lens and my soft box to diffuse the flash from the speed light: ISO 100; f/8; 1/60s