Start a Business Doing Instagram Flatlay Photography

5 min read
Start a Business Doing Instagram Flatlay Photography

Flatlay Photography is an easy business to start if you already have a good camera, and a good eye for colours and style. 

Offer your services to Instagram and Facebook businesses that need pretty photographs of their stock or recipes and don’t have the time (or patience) to make the images look spectacular!  It is a very cheap business to start, and if you have a good quality smartphone already – you are halfway there!

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Flatlay Photography
An example of Flat Lay Photography

What is Flatlay Photography?

Flatlay Photography is a beautifully styled photograph taken from overhead. It usually uses beautiful colours and textures that make the product you are promoting ‘pop’ and be as attractive to customers as possible. The trend for flat lay photography at the moment is clean, unbusy backgrounds – but that changes all the time!

You want the product you are promoting to be the ‘hero’ of the flatlay. Then add different props that go together with the product to make the hero product pop. Think plants or flowers, candles or pens – whatever goes hand in hand with the promoted product.

Once the image has been taken, it is then edited to make it even better than the real thing, then you have a beautiful Instagram Flatlay Photograph that you could charge money for. Images could be styled and sold from $100 plus!

For inspiration, have a look on Instagram and see what Flatlays really appeal to you.

How to ‘Cheat’ with Your Flatlay Photography Business

Shhhh a little secret, find a Graphic Artist and pay them an hourly rate for doing all the styling and photographs themselves.  You then become the ‘Manager’ and can sell multiple photographs to multiple buyers – and even list those photographs for sale on various stock photograph sites.  As you grow, you can employ more graphic artists or have them for more hours.  It is a very scalable business!

bigstock Holiday breakfast with egg on 402753089 | Stay at Home
An example of Flatlay Photography

How to Do Flatlay Photography on a Budget

For a range of beautiful and unique backdrops, go and visit your local flooring or carpet centre (see if you can buy cut-offs in many different colours and styles). Offcuts are perfect for flatlays and you can get them for just a few dollars each.

Ensure that the area is well lit so every detail can be seen clearly. To do this – we recommend you buy an inexpensive LightBox or Lighting Set so you can also do product photography to add to your portfolio.

You can pick up lightboxes super cheaply (we’ve seen many for under $50!) – we recommend having a look at these inexpensive suppliers:

Home Studio Lightbox Tent (40cm)Home Studio Lightbox Tent (40cm) from Kogan
$31.99 (price correct at time of printing)
Grab it here
9cm USB LED Fill Ring Light with Adjustable Stand Clip and Phone Holder Bracket Dimmable Led Camera Ringlight for Live Stream/Make Up/for YouTube(with Ring Light and Phone Holder)9cm USB LED Fill Ring Light with Adjustable Stand
$42.31 (price correct at time of printing)
Grab it here

If you don’t have the cash for a lightbox, try using natural light coming through a window.

Use programs such as Canva or PicMonkey to edit your images so they are bright and clear and are at the required dimensions for Instagram.

Yescom Photography Shooting Light Tent Kit Diffusion Soft Box 91cm Cube Tent w 4 Backdrops Carry Bag Portable Catch com au edited | Stay at Home

What you Can Expect to Charge Your Clients for Flatlay Photography

Up to $100.00 per image – that is fully styled and edited and the image emailed to your client. For beginners – start at $20 and build from there.

Where to Advertise for Clients:

  • Advertise via Instagram – showing clients your skills and tagging them in the images
  • Advertise on Local Business Facebook Groups
  • You could even run a course on how to do flatlay photography!

Plus you can also sell your images!  I’ve seen them for sale on Etsy and for stock photography sites!

More Reading:  Where to Get Work as an Influencer in Australia

13 Businesses That Cost Under $100 to Start | Stay at Home Mum

Where Can I Sell Pre-Made Flatlay Photography?

If you just want to put together some Flay Lay Photography for a bit of practice – choose food and then sell your images to Stock Images Websites. These websites are always looking for brand new content and Flat Lays always sell very well. Your image could be sold over and over and over again – and you get the royalties!

If you decide to create a website and sell your Flat Lay Images directly – there are loads of beautiful Photography Templates you can use for WordPress that cost under $60! We particularly love the Nove Theme (pictured below).

Where Can I Learn More about Flat Lay Photography?

There are a few really great online classes that can really improve your photography. We recommend the following:

iPhone Photography Course | Stay at Home Mum
IG FLatlay | Stay at Home

Jody Allen
About Author

Jody Allen

Jody Allen is the founder of Stay at Home Mum. Jody is a five-time published author with Penguin Random House and is the current Suzuki Queensland Amb...Read Moreassador. Read Less

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