Jonathan Knowles is no stranger to photographing coffee. During his 25 year advertising photography career, Jonathan has worked with world renowned coffee giants Starbucks, Costa, Nespresso and Nescafé. Using his dynamic photographic style, Jonathan has collaborated with talented advertising creatives from all over the world in order to bring the following 7 inspiring coffee photography ideas to life.


jonathan knowles nespresso vintage coffee photography drinks

1. Nespresso Vintage

Working with J. Walter Thompson London, Jonathan created an authentic set build in his London studio to communicate the beautiful heritage of the Nespresso brand.

Focussing on the time, craft and taste of Nespresso Vintage coffee, art director Lauren Harrington and drinks stylist Eliza Baird helped produce a timeless series of coffee photographs.

See the full series here


Costa Coffee Photography Liquid Macro Drinks Advertising Jonathan Knowles

2. Costa Coffee

How better to communicate the taste of coffee than with macro photography?

Costa Coffee commissioned Jonathan Knowles to photograph a beautiful series of abstract liquid compositions.

Jonathan and drinks stylist Eliza Baird experimented with pouring milk into coffee in various different ways to produce this truly artistic image.

See the tantalising film version here


Inspiring Coffee Photography Jonathan Knowles LOr Drinks Advertising

3. L’Or Coffee

M&C Saatchi London wanted to give L’Or coffee a glamorous feel.

Following their successful TVC concept, Jonathan shot model Maud Bourek holding a perfect, glowing espresso.

He used his unique ‘light painting’ technique and teamed up with drinks stylist Ray Spencer to ensure the coffee looked appetising, energetic and illuminated.


Nescafé coffee photography Jonathan Knowles Advertising Photography Drinks

4. Nescafé Azera Nitro

Inspired by the energy and drama of this nitrogen infused coffee, Publicis London wanted coffee to be cascading behind a perfectly chilled product.

Jonathan poured the coffee into flat fronted tanks and worked with Eliza Baird to agitate the liquid resulting in stunningly unique textures and patterns.

The ice base was created using a real ice block with dry ice on the surface.


Costa Cold Brew Inspiring Coffee Photography Jonathan Knowles Advertising Drinks

5. Costa Cold Brew

Coffee photography can be fun and vibrant too!

Karmarama’s creative director, Jon Iredale, worked on this exciting summer campaign for Costa’s new Cold Brew coffee.

Jonathan Knowles shot the splashing drink and then his trusty CGI team added the penguins, coffee beans and lightning bolts to the coffee explosion.

Take a look at a really fun animated version here


Inspiring Coffee Photography Ideas Jonathan Knowles Macro Droplets

6. Macro Droplets

This personal project by Jonathan Knowles focusses on other incredible details of coffee.

Instead of shooting coffee in a conventional way, Jonathan experimented with creating coffee droplets in a controlled set up.

Using a macro lens, he captured a scene that resembles something galactic and other-worldly.


McDonalds McCafe Inspiring Coffee Photography Drinks Advertising Jonathan Knowles

7. McCafé for McDonald’s

TBWA Zürich wanted to create something unique with their new campaign for McCafé.

Championing the simplistic beauty of a McCafé cup of coffee, Jonathan shot this stunning series of floating drinks with art director Bettina Klossner.


Looking for a specialist coffee photographer? We’d love to hear from you…