Veuve Clicquot – Product Photography Without The Product

Posted on September 5, 2016

Recently I stated in a blog that without the conceptual image my love of photography would be hugely diminished.  Photography with an idea over and above just great looking shots drives me to keep moving forwards.  Working with a creative as good as Colin Jones (in this case) gave me that golden opportunity to scratch this itch!  Colin wanted to shoot some great shots involving Veuve Clicquot.  He wanted something that epitomises the VC brand.  He wanted something striking, yet simple.  Graphic, yet with form.  We were just chatting about images when we happened on a shot made from paint.  This is not a new area for me as I have created images out of paint before and both of us agreed that the way a viscous paint eliminates complex lines and how its flat colour builds a landscape of uniformity would perfectly suit our brief.  Taking out the product so that only the paint is visible concludes the reduction of detail leaving only the purity of the colour on display.  Back to basics indeed.

So it was decided, we would explain the world of Veuve Clicquot through paint.  Specifically, the deep yellow colour of their brand.  Colin art directed the shoot and created visuals that formed the acrobatic compositions of our final photographs.  As I love photographing liquid, and are used to shooting motion that is too quick for the eye to see, capturing the controlled rolling curves, undulations and slow motion drips was almost too easy!  I say almost, as we discovered pouring pouring paint onto a round surface which then gets affected by this thing called gravity it (like a badly behaved pet) did exactly what it wanted to!

The two dripping glasses was our take on the traditional champagne tower.  The image needed to have a relationship that had tension whilst balancing that with keeping the delicate nature of the glass design.  The extraction and delivery of the label image explored how far we could take the idea of simplification whilst still retaining a very clear message about the bottle product.  Although things got messy for a while we did persevere and find pouring techniques that gave fantastic results so allowing us to build up our armoury of shapes, curves and drips that would be used together to create our perfectly crafted images.

Verve Cliquot - Phil Sills Drinks Photography


Verve Cliquot pour



Being at the shoot all day may have felt a bit like watching paint dry, so here is a little flavour of what was going on.  Cheers!