You may have noticed a trend recently taking the internet by storm, whether you follow ecommerce trends or you’ve simply seen it on social media, you might have seen that people are now photographing their products in a fresh new way. Whilst the flat lay or ‘knolling’ has been around since the late 80s, it’s only in recent years that this trend has really taken off.
But why is it so effective?
A flat lay is effective for a few reasons, the most important being that it is such a simple way to showcase your products. If you have the perfect layout you can show off everything you have to offer, be it the perfect outfit, a view of your food or something as simple as your desk. Whichever it might be, using a flat lay means there are no distractions, the main and only focus is on the product.
Generally, people love order, you can’t deny that there is something oddly satisfying about seeing things laid out neatly and in order. Seeing products laid out in such a way looks tidy and organised, something that we are, for some reason, are drawn too.
Flat lays seem to have becoming increasingly popular through social media websites and blogs. It isn’t uncommon to find that many bloggers use a flat lay to show off what outfit they intend on wearing, to show off makeup or to show off what food they might be eating. It’s a great way of generating interest for bloggers as it allows for them to show of some details of their day without giving too much away, leading to people going to their websites to find out more.
Although simple in essence you still need to remember when photographing flat lays, that these photos still need to look professional. The reason flat lays are so effective is often down to the lighting, strong shadows and high contrast are going to make it look too harsh, the idea is that the image is pleasing on the eye, this includes lighting.
Don’t forget to plan your layout, there’s a lot of thought put into how the image is laid out, don’t think you can just throw everything together and take a photo. Whilst it’s common for flat lays to be taken on a white background it’s always good to experiment with colours, patterns and textures, keep it unique.