In essence, it's a fog machine in a spray can. Just spray some "atmosphere" into your scene, waft it around to make sure it's evenly dispersed, and voila, you've got dramatic shafts of light and that lovely aesthetic that can only be produced by haze. While cheap fog machines start at roughly $50 and the hazers that are used on professional sets start in the neighborhood of $500, a can of Atmosphere Aerosol comes in at $12, which makes it one of the most cost-effective ways to add that look to your shots.

Here's a quick intro video that shows how Atmosphere Aerosol can spice up a wedding shoot:

Here's a video showing how long a single can lasts, including how long the atmosphere sticks around in your scene:

Last, but certainly not least, here's a great Film Riot episode that should give you some great ideas for how to incorporate fog into your lighting plans:

When I first came across this product the other day, my first reaction was, "There's no way that this could be safe to breathe." Here's what the FAQ on Atmosphere's site says about the ingredients and whether they're safe.

  • It is ozone safe and does not contain any CFC's or ozone depleting chemicals.

    Atmosphere Aerosol

  • The ingredients are propane (45%), butane (45%), and mineral oil (10%). Propane and butane are used as non-toxic propellants. Propane is a safe and environmentally friendly fuel, as well as non-toxic, colorless, and odorless. It is a great source of clean fuel and it’s used by millions of Americans each day. Hair spray cans, aerosol shaving cream cans, and other pressurized canned products such as PAM cooking spray use propane and butane as a propellant. When Atmosphere Aerosol is sprayed, a small, non-harmful amount of gas propels the spray and quickly dissipates, leaving the mineral oil in the air.
  • This product is not known to contain any chemicals currently listed as carcinogens or reproductive toxins.
  • This product’s ingredients are not found in the following lists: Federal, OSHA, NTP, IARC. 
  • Breathing small amounts of this material during normal handling is not likely to cause harmful effects.

All in all, Atmosphere Aerosol strikes me as a good way to get started with using haze and fog in your cinematography, and as a neat portable option for when you're shooting on location and don't want to lug a fog machine along with you. If you're interested in grabbing a can, head over to the Atmosphere Aerosol website.

Source: Atmosphere Aerosol