Flatlay Tips For Product Photography
I am a professional Photographer and an Social Media Marketer
I will be covering basic flat-lay tips for those who are not aware of the concept of flat-lays or struggling with taking good ones. If you are pro still read them maybe you will find one or two good tips for you too
1- Paper Work
If you are a newbie then I would suggest to draw a rough idea on a paper. I still do for my paid projects, it helps you finding props, background and others stuff that will be needed during the shoot. It helps save time and distraction during the shoot. Initially it seems a long procedure but believe me once you are pro it would be just a matter of mind work then
Choose simple/clean background for your shoot. Avoid big patterns of theme until or unless if there is a specific requirement. You can use many things as bg(background) bed sheets, tables, marble floors or craft papers. The key is to choose a background that can act as a blank canvas
If you ask me lighting is the crucial part of any pic. Avoid inbuilt flash and go for natural light. Easy and free option 😉 Put your setup near to the window or anywhere brightly lit place BUT avoid direct sunlight to avoid harsh result or highly contrast pictures.
Start constructing your flatlay by placing the main/hero product first and then other major elements.Play around with how your hero relates to the other major elements in your composition.Keep the props color complimentary to the hero product. There shouldn’t be a contrast otherwise they will deviate the attention from the main product
If hero is the star product of the flatlay then props are like supporting characters in your story.Choose product that shouldn’t steal the limelight of the main product. For example if eyeshadow palette is your hero product then eye-shadow brushes, makeup remover pads, rings or ear rings and similar kinda stuff should be used as props.
Other products that can take your flatlay to other level use of flowers, macrons/croissant, small fruits like berries etc in an appropriate manner BUT don’t use rice and any curry until or unless the shoot is specific to food related.
It helps to stick to a color palette when choosing your secondary props. You props blend in easily with the background without distracting from the main objective of the picture
After arranging all the stuff on the backdrop. Now, its the time to shoot. Flatlays are shot from a bird’s eye view so hold your camera directly above the middle of your flatlay. Stand on a chair or ladder if you need to get higher. The goal is to get your camera parallel to your flat-lay so the lens is aimed straight down
Extra Tips: Always make sure to take multiple pics as many times when you see your pics on the bigger screen you get to know that weather it was blurry or the main object is out of focus. So, to be on the safe side always take extra shot with the variation of angles. Like close ups and macro shots for showing details of the products