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Shoot Retrospective : Spirit of Yorkshire Distillery


The Spirit of Yorkshire distillery are creators of Yorkshire’s first single malt whisky. they contacted us recently about producing a range of shots, to mark the release of a new whisky to their portfolio. Firstly they required packshots, followed by styled line up shots, and (after lockdown is over) a range of lifestyle shots.

Packshots are a standard in product photography, in particular they’re very commonly used with beverage photography as bottles, and glass in general is notoriously difficult to photograph. It can be a double edged sword to photograph, initially it’s all about removing all distracting reflections from the surface of the glass. For those who have done this, they will realise that, although the result looks much more professional, the material doesn’t actually look like glass anymore! The next step is to create a lighting solution that lights the glass in a more pleasing way, introducing diffusion to soften any highlighted areas upon the glass.

Beverage packshot photograph of Spirit of Yorkshire whisky

Their brand identity features a Gannet, “a large seabird with white plumage which catches fish by plunging into the water”. The bottles and cartons also feature the Gannet, and we’ve picked it out on the carton above. The business is based in Yorkshire, just near to Bempton Cliff’s which is nationally renowned for being home to the largest gannet colony in the UK.


Close up of bottle print for Spirit of Yorkshire distillery


For this the client really wanted to emphasise the natural part of their process, and also their traditional processes that are used in the creation of the product. So although the packaging and bottle design are quite modern, it needed to reflect this tradition too.

The client supplied us with the barley grains, we then added some stones, and one of the studio’s stripped vintage tables, which has just the right amount of patina and age. We photographed this against a hand painted background, which was lit across it’s surface to accentuate its texture. Three different shots were composited together to provide the optimal lighting on the surface of each bottle. A bottle was removed in each of these shots so that there were no reflections from one bottle to another. Diffusion was used to soften the highlights on each piece.

Lifestyle beverage shot of whiskies for Spirit of Yorkshire Distillery

These couple of images show how the scene is split up photographing each segment of the scene independently, also it’s separately diffused, and then all composited back together to form the final shot.

Behind the scenes at a beverage product photography shoot Behind the scenes at a beverage product photography shoot showing the diffusion

To check out their unique products see their website at

We do also have a range of drinks ephemera in our prop store (in the kitchen section) which allow us to style the images, including artificial ice cubes, tumblers, champagne flutes, wine glasses, cocktail shakers and glasses all suitable for use in drink photography.