Stock photography essentials: work in two dimensions with a lay-flat photo!

(Image credit: Future)

The lay-flat shot is an incredibly popular style in this age of social media, online marketing and web design. Arguably stock photography has gained a new purpose with the advent of ecommerce and online advertising; the appetite for image content bound for web page headers, blog posts, social media marketing campaigns and newsletters seems insatiable. The top-down lay-flat image fits these uses perfectly for several reasons.

Firstly the lack of depth is undistracting, enabling the image and written content to work seamlessly together without either overpowering the other. Secondly, any objects placed in the shot are all equally visible, which is ideal for product-based images. Shots can also be quite conceptual in nature, meaning they are generally interchangeable between pages, posts and stories. Finally they can be easily adapted for purpose, through the addition of other graphics or copy. 

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Peter Fenech

As the Editor for  Digital Photographer magazine, Peter is a specialist in camera tutorials and creative projects to help you get the most out of your camera, lens, tripod, filters, gimbal, lighting and other imaging equipment.

After cutting his teeth working in retail for camera specialists like Jessops, he has spent 11 years as a photography journalist and freelance writer – and he is a Getty Images-registered photographer, to boot.

No matter what you want to shoot, Peter can help you sharpen your skills and elevate your ability, whether it’s taking portraits, capturing landscapes, shooting architecture, creating macro and still life, photographing action… he can help you learn and improve.