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How to Create Beautiful Floral Flat Lay Photography

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We can all agree that flowers are a thing of beauty. A vase full of bright and colourful flowers is a welcome showpiece in any room. But it’s not always so easy to capture their radiance in a photograph.

With floral flat lay photography, you can capture the beauty of flowers by adding your own touch of creativity. Use your floral design skills to create striking and elegant flat lay photos that celebrate your love of flowers.

If you’re new to flat lay photography, we are here to help you get started.

floral flat lay with a white background
© Evie S.

What is Floral Flat Lay Photography?

Floral flat lay photography is a combination of flower arranging and still life photography. It involves elements of design and is an exploration of photography composition.

You take flowers and lay them flat on a surface, creating a colourful and vibrant still-life scene. You use your camera to capture the scene, creating amazing images that sing the song of flowers.

Flat lay photographs are an excellent way for floral designers to express their ideas. They can bring their unique style to the photos, adding variety and power to their online media.

floral flat lay with shattered porcelain
© Dina Belenko

How to Create Floral Flat Lay Photography

Here is our list of excellent tips to help you get started with floral flat lay photography.

Use Flowers That Tell a Story

Your flower selection will be down to personal preference. If you love roses, you can experiment with them. There are hundreds of varieties, so you can create images that celebrate this flower.

But some flowers hold special meanings and associations. Red roses are linked to passion and love, while Lilies are often related to funerals.

Daffodils sound their trumpets in early spring, reminding us of that season. And, as the national flower of Wales, they have a geographical association.

You can use whole flowers, with or without stems. And you can use individual petals.

floral flat lay photography: multiple flowers used to give a feeling of summer
© Lucas George Wendt

Choose a Colour Scheme for a Uniform Composition

Filling your flat lay photography with as many different colours is one option. It will certainly make for an impressive image. But consider refining your colour choices to create themes and set your style.

Colour selection in floral flat lay is much the same as in flower arranging. You want to find colours that compliment each other. Each flower and petal should have a clear voice without being drowned out by the others.

Colours influence the mood and theme of your floral styling. You can select paler colours for a more fresh image. Or you can go rich and moody if you want an autumnal feel.

floral flat lay: lilac background used with similar coloured flowers
© Anna Sullivan

Use Your Background to Create Unique Images

You should choose a material for the background that lets the flowers sing to their full potential. A white background works well. And you can use different materials to change the atmosphere of the image, for example using paper, card, or even a bedsheet.

You don’t want anything overpowering, but you can use other surfaces to add texture and colour. There’s the stitch work of different fabrics. And you can use the grain of a wooden table.

floral flat lay: flowers placed on canvas to give a rustic feel
© Darren Nunis

Experiment With Light to Change to Mood of Your Image

Natural light is excellent for floral photography because it’s soft and spreads evenly. And it means no expensive equipment! All you’ll need is a window.

If your natural light source creates shadows you don’t want, you can use mirrors or white sheets of paper as reflectors. It’ll keep you light even without having to use much equipment.

You can use electric lights and lamps. They’ll give you a bright space to work with. And you can experiment by creating strong shadows.

floral flat lay: strong shadows created by careful lighting
© Christina Deravedisian

Be Bold With Your Composition

Think about the space you’re using for your flat lay design. How do you want to fill it?

You can opt for a minimalist layout, using only a few flower blooms and stems. You can use negative space to emphasise the objects you do include.

Alternatively, you can use more flowers for an intricate composition. You can arrange flower heads and petals in a busy formation, creating patterns and shapes in your photo.

You can use stems to add structure to your photos. Their straight lines can bring counter the soft floral shapes. And they can be to frame and direct the image.

floral flat lay: bold composition by separating the flowers in the middle of the image
© Annie Spratt

Try Using Extra Elements and Props

Using additional objects and props is a great way to bring meaning to your flat lay photography.

You can use miniatures or toys to create garden scenes. Or you can add items that help tell a story within your image. Just remember that the flowers are your main subject.

Floral flat lay can be used for product photography. For florists, the flat lay design is the product. But you can use flat lay to decorate products for advertisements.

floral flat lay: a prosthetic hand and toy insects used to create a more lively image
© Dina Belenko

Conclusion

Floral flat lay is a great way to express your love of flowers in photography. It’s a style of photography that incorporates design and flower arranging.

It can be used to celebrate flowers. Or you can use flat lays for advertising and social media content.

If you have a passion for plants, you should try your hand at floral flat lay photography.

If you want to learn more techniques to create magical images, check out our Magical Photography Spellbook.

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