Focus the camera on the edge of the incense stick. Illuminate the smoke from the side using a table lamp or a torch. Use a timer to eliminate the camera shakes.
A good amount of patience and a number of shots are required because of the fluidity of the smoke. Best thing is to experiment to get perfect angle, perfect lighting and perfect moment to get a fantastic shot.
The inset picture of the smoke was taken at night against a red curtain as a dark background, camera resting on a stool and smoke lighted from side with an LED torch.
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