9 Tips to Mastering Flat Lays

Hey, I am back, and this time we will be talking about how to create flat lay.  I took a poll on my Instagram stories.  I got alarming amount of “YAY” votes; 100% of you voted for me to spill some tea on how to create and master flat lays.

As a blogger I find flat lays to very beneficial when they are added to my social media platforms.  It is a clean clutter free way of showing off products and concepts.  It is visual appealing and normal the driving force of Flat lays have became a very popular way to showcase products, tell a story, or make up for times you can’t post a fashion photo. Guilty !

Now creating a seems so simple, it even looks simple, however it can be quite tricky to put a perfect flat lay together.  It is a lot of different elements that you have to know in order to get flat lay photography. Let me tell you right now, flat lay photographer is creativity, and like creativity you have to practice at it to become a master at it. Today I will be listing 9 tips you need to know that will help you become a master with flat lays in no time. These are all the things that I learn over the course of time that help me improve.


1. Get Inspired | Study Flat Lay Photography

Get inspired! I know there is someone out there that you admire for their skills. I got into flat lay from a girl name Mandy Fergurria, formerly a beauty blogger over the A Girl Obsessed Blog! Her beauty flat lays were amazing and I have to say I was obsessed with them!  The depth and dimension was amazing. She would then play with different textures and angles too.  All the element, she was a master in, created  the perfect flat lay. So I starting replicating her picture and then I fell into my own groove. Note: Take a look at Pinterest or #flatlay hashtag on Instagram to get inspired by the art.

2. Composition is Key 

Composition is simply balance in a photo! I learn that you want to use the “Rule of Thirds”. (Still working on this).  You want to look at your photo as 9 square grid.  Simply. 3 squares across and 3 squares down. 9 grid!  This will help you with placement and create natural lines. Also understanding negative space, dimension, and depth will also elevate your flat lay game.


3. Select A Theme | Tell a Story

What do you want to say in your picture? What story do you want to tell? Stick to a color theme and product theme. Choose your color palette and find products that gel well with your color scheme.  Scoops up a few props  A few props you can use are make up tools, iphones,  laptops, magazines, faux  flowers, beauty tools. Whatever you have around the house will work.   Next, figure out the style or layout you want. Do you want to free form , grid style , minimalist, diagonal, or texture.

Remember you are telling a story. What message do you want to convey to your audience with your flat lay.  Simply build upon your theme have fun. Note: Remember to keep it balance and don’t over clutter the image.

4. Good Lighting is Important 

Lighting can make or break a photo.  Have you ever took a picture in probable light? Yeah it came out yellowish or too blurry, right? So shoot in natural light. It can help your picture come lively and bright. Note: You can fun around with editing app. I normally toy with exposure, saturation, brightness, and highlight to get the right quality.


5. Shoot High or/ Bird’s Eye View 

Make sure you take your picture from above which will give you 2D effect. Use a tripod with 90 degree arm for DSLR camera. If the camera is too much use your phone and use a step stool to capture the shot from above. Note: With your phone use 2 hands and shoot in a Square frame.

6. Use Solid Color Background | Simple Background

When I first got into flat lays I would use a poster board from the dollar store.  I since then graduated to 1 1/2 yards of white fabric from Joann’s Fabric as my background. No specific fabric just make sure it thick enough and see through.

White background is the best to use in order for your theme to pop. However, I am experimenting with other solid colors. Remember to keep your background simple. Do not use a background that is going take away from the story telling of the products.


7. Work from Big to Small

Use 1 to 2  big a clear items as your  focal point.  It can be in the center or off to the side. Then use small items to fill up small spaces.

8. Reposition Products

Make sure things don’t look too staged. Stagger your products around! Fluff some things out. Note: For those products that love to roll away, tape them down.


9. Edit Photo To Your Liking

Even if you get the prefect lighting and composition it never too much to edit your picture. Find and editing style that work for you. I prefer bright and vibrant colors. I fun with brightness, saturation, and other lighting. Note: Resize your image to square frame (640px X 640px). My favorite editing tool is VSCO app.

Like so many things in life, the more you practice the better you become. So the more you practice flat lays the better you will become. I hope you found this post on flat lay photography to be helpful. If you have any other questions, leave me comment. I will also share tips in the future about props  for flat lays in the future.

Thank you so much for reading and don’t hesitate to like, comment and subscribe to my blog. Let me know what you wanna see in the future on the blog ! I am here for y’all! 🙂

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