Capturing the Essence
Having been so closely involved in its creation, the designer, engineers and artisans have an intimate relationship with a new watch. We see its personality emerge as its design develops through prototyping and iteration, and its true character as it is finally born in production.
When we hold the first piece of a new line, we feel its heart beating not just in the movement but also in the harmony of the components, each designed in minute detail and painstakingly crafted to work together to be more than the sum of their parts. At MEERSON, we believe this is the true beauty of a watch; it is both a singular unit and a complex system of hundreds of congruent parts, each of which are noble, elegant and seamlessly integrated into the whole.
Putting on the first Altitude was electric and exhilarating, but we know that for many their initial experience of it will be digital. So we set out to capture this feeling in our imagery, to bring the Altitude to life in two dimensions through the art in its detail.
Enter Claude Joray, a storied watch photographer who immediately clicked with the Altitude and the MEERSON team. On a quiet street in Bienne, his studio is tucked away up a flight of stairs behind an unassuming black door. There he creates magic, with an incredibly technical and intricate camera system that captures 80 million pixels in each image. But to bring the Altitude to life is not just to photograph it in high resolution, because it is a being that reveals a new aspect of itself in every angle and in each catch of the light. Just as Meerson perfected his design by adjusting the Altitude’s angles (sometimes by single degrees) until it was both supremely comfortable to wear and strikingly beautiful to see, Joray captured its spirit by crafting the lighting, camera angle and positioning just so. A single image not only took hours to set up, but is in fact the combination of tens of individual shots. Each focal point is meticulously illuminated and the results combined to convey the true presence of the watch, such as the eye would see first-hand.
Joray’s expertise was complemented by David Ferrier and his team at Calitho, also based in Bienne and specialised in shooting what are called ‘soldier’ images. These pictures detail the front, back and profile of each watch style, as seen on the product pages. In contrast to the emotionality of ambiance images, soldier shots allow for detailed comparison between each style and give a pure view of the composition of each watch. Together, these images capture the body and soul of the Altitude and, we hope, express that feeling each of us had when first putting it on.
Joray’s and Calitho’s imagery can be seen throughout our website, brochures and advertisements. They show that the creation of a watch does not stop with the 88 artisans who shape it physically; it also relies on the unseen craftsmen who give us the ability, both digitally and in print, to share its spirit with the world.
- Laura Aust, Head of Product Development