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Behind our 2022 Limited Edition Bloody Shiraz Gin bottle

Each year, we celebrate the arrival of a new harvest of cool climate Victorian Shiraz grapes with a limited edition bottling of our Bloody Shiraz Gin. Something for you to keep and collect long after you’ve finished your bottle of gin.

Over the years we’ve experimented with typography (hello 2019 and 2020) and even dabbled in a little bit of animation. And now, for our 2022 Limited Edition Bloody Shiraz Gin bottle, we’ve teamed up with world-renowned Australian photographer and artist, Luke Shadbolt to create a bespoke print based on one of his iconic wave photographs.

Printed directly onto the glass, this year’s artwork depicts a sculptural waveform set against a wine-dark night-time landscape, using the deep red of the Bloody Shiraz liquid as the backdrop to the scene.

We caught up with Luke to chat a bit more about his work, the inspo behind this label and, (most pressingly) which gin he reaches for first on the bar cart. Read on for all the deets.

CAN YOU TELL US MORE ABOUT YOUR BACKGROUND?

I worked for a long time as an art director and photo editor in the surfing industry, but I’d always wanted to be the one taking the pictures. So I saved up enough for an underwater camera and began shooting swells up and down the Australian east coast. Eventually I was contributing to all the big Australian and international surfing magazines.

I soon moved more into commercial photography but always wanted to stay working within nature and the ocean on personal projects. After shooting a series in 2016 titled “Maelstrom,” I had my first solo exhibition with Michael Reid Gallery in Sydney and since then have been lucky enough to showcase exhibits across Europe and the US.

HOW DID YOUR COLLABORATION WITH FOUR PILLARS COME ABOUT?

Matt Jones (Four Pillars co-founder) came across some of my work at a Sydney exhibition in late 2021. We got to chatting about the sculptural “liquid as solid” quality of my pictures and threw around some ideas on how to get the patterns from the photos into a printed form. He was keen on getting me involved with a new bottle design, so we caught up again over a couple of G&Ts, and the collaboration was born!

WHAT INSPIRED THE ARTWORK FOR THE LABEL?         

I’ve always wanted to explore print-making and this seemed like the perfect opportunity. I was looking at a lot of Japanese woodblock prints, especially the work of Hokusai and Hiroshige. I ended up going with an etching on copper plate, which also ties in nicely with Four Pillars because all their gins are distilled in copper CARL stills.

WHAT’S YOUR FAVOURITE FOUR PILLARS GIN?

I’m a big fan of the Rarer Dry Gin, but I’m pretty keen to try the new Fresh Yuzu Gin too. They’re all good though. (We like this guy!)

People & Community
Posted
31.05.2022
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