Flat lay photography is a simple and classy way to show your items on social media—from your beauty products and daily outfits to your travel and night-out essentials. If you want to step up your Instagram game, follow the steps we’ve compiled here. Believe it or not, you’ll be a master in no time.
1. Pick a theme.
Too many elements in a flat lay photo can confuse viewers, so show them exactly what you’re trying to say through a theme. If you want to show a luxurious afternoon spent at home, take a photo of some macarons, flowers, and a magazine. If you want to show that you’re having an outdoor tea with friends, get your sweets, cakes, and a teapot. For an assembled #OOTD, take a shot of your sunglasses and heels along with your clothes.
2. Use a basic background.
A wooden floor and white table/bed are the best backdrops for any flat lays because they help show the true colors of your things. If you don’t have a white table or platform for background, make one using a white paper or cloth.
3. Focus on one color scheme.
Similar to picking a single theme, choosing a color scheme for your flat lay is crucial, too. Select the color palette you want and stick to it. Don’t add a contrasting color to your flat lay; instead, adorn it with white, black, and metallic.
4. Shoot in the square.
Always shoot flat lays in the square so it will be easy to see what will fit in the frame. In this way, too, you won’t worry about cropping the photo before uploading it.
5. Mind the composition.
Create symmetry on both sides of the frame to have more balanced shots. Leave space between the items so it won’t appear cluttered.
6. Reflect your bedroom floor, not a boutique.
Forget about the clothes in a store display. Put your shoes in opposite directions, fold your tops messily, cuff your jeans just like how you would wear them, and shoot.
7. Get the bird’s-eye view.
Books, magazines, and photos are great in flat lays because they are flat already. But dresses and clothes tend to look stretched and bulky from an above angle so fold them in boxy shapes or neat halves to create structure. To add texture to a flat lay, try adding laces, flowers, or small colorful fruits such as cherries, strawberries, and blueberries.
8. Prefer natural light.
Using natural light on your photos allows you to play around with shadows and add contrast to your items and the background. Walk around your house with one item and take some test shots near the window or in the kitchen to help you decide where the best lighting is.
If shadows are a huge issue in your pictures, shoot on a cloudy day. The light present in a cloudy setting helps diffuse shadows and creates fewer of them.
9. Try different layouts.
Don’t settle with an initial frame or setup. Move the items around, take several shots, and try different layouts until you find the best arrangement.
10. Use an editing app.
A great flat lay highlights item in their natural form, so don’t bother doing some serious editing to your photos. Just add contrast, enhance the color, adjust the lighting, and make the white areas crisper.
With these ten tips, you’re sure to equip yourself with the right skills in conquering the flat lay world. Just remember: keep the photo interesting, colorful, and story-oriented.
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Sources: vogue.com.au | scrunch.com | refinery29.com | whowhatwear.com | theexposure.co