The challenge: Create a photograph powerful enough to turn people off cigarettes without resorting to the gruesome imagery so prevalent in anti-smoking campaigns. With the help of a couple of dancers, an up-for-anything ad agency and hundreds of yards of Lycra, Los Angeles photographer Ricardo Marenco did just that. "I wanted to evoke a sea of people trapped inside their addiction," says Marenco, who created the shot for the California Department of Public Health's billboard and print campaign. To achieve his desired effect, he photographed the dancers individually inside 7-foot-tall Lycra cigarettes. Then he digitally overlaid embers and smoke from real cigarettes on the figures. The ads ran without any words, only a helpline number - the image said it all.
• Training: BFA in filmmaking from the University of California, Los Angeles; learned photography through working as an assistant
• Also shoots: Film publicity posters (past projects have included V for Vendetta and House of Wax)
• Inspired by: His mom, who "works harder than anyone in the world"
• Best advice: Be good, be quick and be fast, but don't bust any heads.
• Website: ricardomarenco.com