Art Direction

Creative Direction





Penhaligon’s is a British perfume house founded in the 1860s by William Henry Penhaligon, appointed Court Barber and Perfumer to Queen Victoria. Today, Penhaligon’s (part of PUIG) is still crafting exquisite perfumes that capture the essence of British elegance and refinement.

Business Objective

Over the years, Penhaligon’s collaborated with several agencies and photographers. As a consequence, all its visuals, produced at different moments in time, were following very varied styles. The website and online catalogue lacked consistency and appeared as a patchwork of very contrasting images.

The Challenge

No consistency between the existing photography, with varied content that had been shot without any continuity and many variations in terms of shadow, angle, light etc… The initial project required to reshoot over 1,000 shots on a tight production schedule of 15 days. The new assets needed to reflect the new brand identity and work harmoniously with the new Campaign in terms of style, colour palettes, visual guidelines etc.

Creative Objective

Penhaligon’s was aiming to elevate its digital presence, to match the quality of its creations and showcase modern elegance. Penhaligon’s reached out to BORN to redefine the visual signature of its online catalogue, by introducing new rules and guidelines that would consolidate the aesthetic of the brand, while insuring more visual consistency.

Penhaligon’s entire Catalogue reshoot

Turnover: BORN reshot over 1,000 products on a tight production schedule of 15 days.

Deliverables: 4 collections (250 products per collection), mainly for the online catalogue but also for
other marketing activation.

Impact: Improved engagement, increased sales, and a reduction in the number of product returns.

Long term consistency

With enhanced product photographic work, BORN ensured that the site’s aesthetics would remain
consistent on the longer term.
By outlining set rules within a guideline document and following them, BORN managed to keep the
same type of shadow and lighting in all products, as well as identical. angles and crops. To ensure
product consistency, BORN also created master spheres for the top of each bottle.

Fragrance Collections Focused photoshoots

BORN used all its creative resources form set design to art direction to prop sourcing. This imagery helped Penhaligon’s communicate the inherent qualities of its collections adding a sensorial feel to the inspiration of each fragrance. Turnover: 1 week to shoot, 2 weeks to retouch. Deliverables: 20 images (5 shots per collections), mainly for the online catalogue but also for other marketing material. Impact: improved catalogue consistency and enhanced customer experience.

BORN used props such as rope, spices, cedar wood and stone, associated to amber tones and subtle golden hues as a nod to the Trade Routes, but also as a sensorial evocation of the woody and mineral radiance of the Halfeti Cedar Eau de Parfum.


Penhaligon’s took a chapter out of the history books for the creation of the Trade Routes collection. Inspired by luxurious goods traded at the London Docks at the turn of the 19th century.

The rich shadows with soft edges, created by an angled light coming from above, produce an enveloping atmosphere that conveys all the depth and mystery surrounding the collection, as an invitation to explore and discover a treasure rooted in the past.

British tales collection

Penhaligon’s unveiled the historic stories behind British Tales. A myriad of timeless classics to scent yourself royal.
For this series of images, the focus was put on fragrance storytelling. Indeed, through their inspiration and construction, all scents express a unique story.

The visuals are all destined to showcase the creativity and craftsmanship of Penhaligon’s fine fragrances. All props selected for these compositions embody both the idea of storytelling and craftsmanship: letters, typewriters, notebooks, but also magnifying glasses and labels, elevated with the rich textures of ribbons and draperies.

Portraits Collection

Portraits is a tribute to the good old English spirit: stiff upper lip, caustic humour, and a knack for provocation.
The concept for this series of visuals was entitled “The Portraits Pleasure Ball”. The most anticipated event of the year, where love, lust, lateness and fragrance are so very much in fashion.

All the props selected were a direct reference to this extravagant ballroom: elegant tiled floors, mouldings and chandeliers, unsettled by a few turbulent objects – a spilled flute of champagne, a broken candelabra, some displaced curtain fabric… all victims of the delicious chaos of this unforgettable night.

Maison’s Classics

This campaign is an ode to what makes Penhalighon’s truly unique: its history and he craftsmanship. From a visual perspective, it is meant to translate an elegant classicism, with a touch of humour and eccentricity, in true British Fashion.

The magnifying glasses and textured boxes wrapped in ribbons are all props that seemed rooted in the pure Penhaligon’s tradition. In contrast, the elegant pigeon in a bow-tie and top-hatted Morse seem directly escaped from a Lewis Carrol novel and add a touch of surprise and intrigue. A disruptive and refined aesthetic that perfectly captures the essence of the Maison’s classics.

Seasonal Collections

For Mother’s Day, Penhaligon’s transport its audience deep in the heart of the forest. At the origins, at the very roots of Mother Tree.

A tree that incarnates the source of life, the promise of new beginnings, the warmth of a day only just unfolding. Nature is at the heart of this series of visual, full of flowers, ooh, roots and leaves, with a glowing light piercing through the leaves, projecting soft shadows all around. The tones are quite pink and bright, reflecting the soft incandescence of a rising sun. Under this light, the boxes and products are bright and sharp, emerging as a gift from Mother Nature.