How to Flatlay (Basics)

Before creating this blog, I do instablogging which is mainly compose of a lot of flatlay pictures. I am not the most creative out there, but I want to share some of the tips I learned from researching and watching flatlay tutorials.

What is a Flatlay?



It is a photograph taken from the above view so it lays flat. It can be used to tell life story, curate objects and promote business.

Elements of a Flatlay

1. Lighting

According to the online lessons I have watched, this is the most important thing to consider. Natural light is what I recommend because it just gives justice to your photos. I always shoot my pictures mid day because the light in my room is perfect.
Too much light? You can use a white card to reflect or a thin fabric to diffuse the light.

2. Theme and Color

For the theme, that’s where you get creative. There is no specific rule for themes so that means you can freely express your individuality.

For the color, it is recommended to use at least 3 colors only to maintain balance. But then again, you are still free to play with combinations as long as it doesn’t overpower each other.

3. Props

My flatlays are minimalistic in style so as much as possible I don’t use props. But hey, they look super pretty when being added to your pictures. Most commonly used are flowers, magazines, jewelry, plates and other craft materials.

adding some props

4. Background

My personal choice for background is just a plain white canvass. Other instagrammers use tables, fabrics, cards, marbles, grass and wrapping papers to add design and color to their photographs.

5. Composition

My best advice is to keep your pictures easy on the eyes. You can also use the rule of thirds, wherein you will use a grid and make sure that your focus occupies two thirds of the photo space. I don’t know but it looks a lot better if you use this technique when focusing a specific object.

6. Editing

Of course you are allowed to use some apps to prettify or to correct your image. My favorite editing tools are Snapseed, VSCO Cam, and Picsart. I don’t use a lot of filter, I only adjust the brightness and the contrast of the picture according to my liking.

So there you go, these are just only the basic things you need to know to create an amazing flatlay. The rest, you will discover it by yourself as you explore with themes and backgrounds.

Comment below if you some points you want to share.

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Hi there! I am a blogger and social media influencer from the Philippines. I love collecting makeup and I am big on skin care! Welcome to my thoughts and I hope you enjoy dropping by! :)

23 thoughts on “How to Flatlay (Basics)

  1. Hi Keith I’m so glad that you came up with this flatlay 101. I’ve been doing flatlays also by myself and I agree that white is the best background that you can use. So clean and pleasing to the eyes. Also agree that natural light is the best element that you can use on you flatlays. I also use pics art but never tried using on flatlays. I just use the filters when posting in IG. Doing flatlays is like a therapy to me. It relaxes me whenever I’m feeling stressed and down. So thank you for the tips that you’ve mentioned here. IG: honeyjexie

    Liked by 1 person

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