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Getting the right locations and then executing truly original shots

Final notes on a photographic journey from Santander to Speyside

This week saw the conclusion on the shooting of the Albert Watson edition for The Macallan Masters of Photography. Visit this post to view all our video diary short and our flickr gallery to see the making-of stills.

After a 15 hour journey from Santander to Elgin, shooting began at a grey and drizzly Macallan Estate last Monday. First on the agenda was a 2 hour recce so that Albert could use his gimlet eye to meet the challenge of creating images with a real point of difference to exhibition quality.

First stop was still house 1 for a repeat image shot of our stills, followed by a stunning image of our spirit stills as if they were a plate in a book, and finally evocative shots of our talent in situ.

Getting the right locations and then executing truly original shots was a real challenge but a dunnage warehouse, exquisite lighting and some Amber nectar enabled him to work his magic for the next image. A breathtakingly moody image in the marrying warehouse was followed by some extraordinary shots of Easter Elchies house in a wild and gothic form.

Then the ultimate challenge: a 2 hour and excruciatingly difficult still life in our Oak Hall, with homage to Josef Sudek that was literally a pain in the neck for our leading lady. Finally at 9.30 it was a 'wrap' and the team, hungry had a restaurateur screaming at us to get there before the chef exited!

The next day at The Macallan saw dense cloud and heavy rain, but Albert battled on with platinum print standard and hauntingly beautiful shots of the Estate. The scenic shot was tricky, involving two sturdy men from the filling store manhandling a sherry butt over a barbed wire fence into a field. Stunning vintage bottle still lives, portraits and artefacts saw us close off The Macallan Estate shooting. Unfortunately I had to head South for a meeting with our American partners and could play no part in the final two days of the shoot.

My men on the ground tell me that shooting in Mallaig and Glenfinnan produced some of the most evocative shots of the Highlands possible, and saw Albert at his happiest. 

So, although the art and limited edition outcome will not see the light of day until later this year we are very proud of what we have achieved for The Macallan so far: A unique set of 72 images that will tell our secrets through a portfolio shot by one of the best photographers ever, available to be bought and enjoyed by you, our drinkers.

In addition, we have shared with you the process of The Macallan in a transparent way that no other drinks brand has ever done before. Over 5,000 of you have viewed our 6 video diary clips, countless others have enjoyed the pictures and my twitter/audioboo reporting. You can even go and recreate the shoot yourself using the google map on our blog.

Above all, we will have a superb limited edition bottling available that is different from but hopefully as successful as the Rankin Edition.

Enjoy!

Ken Grier, Director of Malts

Mario Testino

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Happy #BurnsNight! What better way to celebrate than with a dram of Scotland’s very own #TheMacallan... http://t.co/IdpW9oo9d6

25 Jan 15
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Join @GiveTruly as they sit down with Ken Grier to find out more about the upcoming Ultimate Dinner @CanRocaCeller: http://t.co/eTHkQaPSrF

22 Jan 15
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We’re appreciating our deliciously smooth 12 Years Old this #WhiskyWednesday. Which Macallan dram are you savouring? http://t.co/deNBMrWXc3

21 Jan 15
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Congratulations @derekmcnulty & @chrisweston, you have both won a pair of VIP tickets to @LondonArtFair. Please DM us your email address

20 Jan 15
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We'll be @LondonArtFair, to celebrate we’re offering 2 followers the chance to win 2 VIP tickets. RT to win [UK ONLY] http://t.co/xTdBm3lkkx

19 Jan 15
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Join @TimeforWhisky for an inside look at the Hong Kong launch of our Masters of Photography @MarioTestino edition http://t.co/YjjsZcmLQH

16 Jan 15
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Today, we invite you to ‘Meet the Master’ behind the lens of #MacallanMasters of Photography 5, @MarioTestino: http://t.co/5A1s5Lff4r

15 Jan 15
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Why not savour The Macallan with friends this #WhiskyWednesday? @Photoadams24 enjoyed our Select Oak... http://t.co/CZeIkDCkKk

14 Jan 15
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It’s #FineFoodFriday & we’re pairing Sienna with a chocolate pot & vanilla bean ice cream from @TheMillhousesa http://t.co/6ubGYWYXba

09 Jan 15
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This #WhiskyWednesday we’re savouring The Macallan ‘Infinitely’ cocktail, an elegant twist on a Manhattan http://t.co/qzxaKvBPMI

07 Jan 15
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Savour M in our nosing glass by @Lalique. Reply & @ mention a friend using #Mac12days for you both to win glasses http://t.co/LwLRwY8SIF

05 Jan 15
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It’s the start of a new week, in a brand new year, no better reason for a dram of Amber... http://t.co/wNvb6mVbF8

05 Jan 15
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Serve Ruby neat & savour the flavours! Reply & @ mention a friend using #Mac12days for you both to win our glasses http://t.co/bplWOFjYik

04 Jan 15
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Savour Old Gold cocktails in style. Reply & @ mention a friend using #Mac12days for you both to win our tumblers http://t.co/bawmNEKd0x

03 Jan 15
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Add a splash of water to release Fine Oak 21's flavours. Reply & @ mention a friend using #Mac12days to win glasses http://t.co/h6Xnj0lrfj

02 Jan 15
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Toast the New Year with 25 Year Old neat in M glasses.Reply & @ mention a friend using #Mac12days for you both to win http://t.co/hweJ7D4bhd

01 Jan 15
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Happy New Year! How will you serve up The Macallan to toast the New Year? http://t.co/jIz9ap214E

01 Jan 15
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For maximum chill serve Gold over ice ball. Reply & @ mention a friend using #Mac12days for you both to win tumblers http://t.co/uiCoCc06Uf

31 Dec 14
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Today, we’re raising a dram of our rich Ruby for #Hogmanay... Sláinte! http://t.co/DSu9iw0HeB

31 Dec 14
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Nose & taste sumptuous Sienna. Reply & @ mention a friend using #Mac12days for you both to win a nosing glass http://t.co/1dftMsuRzo

30 Dec 14
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Join our very own @MacallanCraig on @iWMagazine & discover all about our character, heritage & history http://t.co/uMoTvTqfim

29 Dec 14

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Explore the Macallan I am of legal drinking age in my country

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