My little Bert Stern story :-)
I've heard lots of Bert Stern stories from various NYC assistants over the years. Bert was brilliant and enormously creative but wasn't the sharpest knife in the drawer at purely technical issues. The phrase "happy accident" seemed to follow him and to his credit, he was lucky far more than he wasn't.
The iconoclastic inverted pyramids in the martini glass came after days of trying to get something to scream "dry" shooting in the Egyptian desert and nothing seemed to work...the "myth" has it that the effect in the final shot was something Bert noticed while drinking some of the "product" and decided to try it the next morning at dawn. That shot was amazing to me particularly because of the creativity that was caused by pure desperation–which seemed to be Bert's standard MO. I think a large part of Bert's success was due to the years he worked as an art director before turning to his own photography...Bert had a remarkable career but was somewhat forgotten for a number of years. Too bad I missed the Chicago showing of the Bert Stern: Original Madman film
...but I'm glad he lived long enough to be in the movie (and see it, I presume–although he hated being in front of the camera).