Starbucks wanted to celebrate the Spring launch of its new Honey Vanilla Macchiato alongside their Caramel and Hazelnut flavors, so they called on Annabelle Breakey to shoot natural light, airy and pretty images. The three drinks feature milky swirls and indulgent drizzles of honey, hazelnut, and caramel.
“It’s more technically challenging than one might think. There’s a lot of thought and creativity that goes into each step of creating these images,” says Annabelle.
Annabelle has worked with Starbucks on several projects – she says that Starbucks usually has a vision for the project and she then works closely with the art director to implement it. “For this project, we created a bright café atmosphere with leaves on the outside of the window,” she said.
“Macchiatos are tough to photograph—they’re a temperamental and challenging subject, but that’s part of the attraction to the project,” Annabelle admits. These drinks may look like they’ve just been dropped into the set, but on a project like this, Annabelle and her team will deliver numerous options to the company. “It really takes several captures to build what you see in a moment,” said Annabelle.
“By using condensation, drippy syrup and capturing light through ice, my goal is to make these drinks look as delicious and tasty as possible,” says Annabelle. “I am creating appetite appeal through texture and light.”
Annabelle’s on-set team consisted of some seven or eight people including a digital tech, a producer, industry leading prop and food stylists, and an in-house retouching artist. In addition, Annabelle worked with Starbucks’ Managing Art Buyer Jodi Morrison and Creative Manager Matt Peloza.
Annabelle has been shooting food and beverages for more than 10 years, using both studio and natural light. She says her favorite clients are those who really challenge her, and invite her to bring all of her skills to the table. “Starbucks is a great client because they let me use all of my faculties –whatever they want to do — I can do.”
“Whatever I’m shooting for Starbucks is always my favorite thing I’ve shot for them, because every single time, it’s a new technical challenge to make it look effortless, fluid, delicious and easy,” Annabelle said.
Stay tuned for Annabelle’s next collaboration with Starbucks, due out in July – a variety of frosty, cold beverages – perfect for Summer. But for now, let’s savor Spring.