Big flat lays are very much in trend both commercially and with social media. Here are three ways that I set up the camera on an overhead rig as well as their pros and cons.
Flat lays seem to be here to stay. As a food photographer, they are a staple of my portfolio. I probably shoot more flat lays than any other angle in my line of work. They are also becoming more popular as thumbnails on YouTube and for any brand to display their products on social media.
In this video, I look at the three methods that I commonly use. The C Stand seems to be the trend on YouTube at the moment, although it is incredibly unstable. There is the super clamp on to the studio background stand, which is my preferred on-location option if the space allows. And then, there's the massive studio stand, which is great in a studio, but not really a viable option anywhere else.
Although these are the three main options that I cover in the video, I have myself used a few other rigs in the past, including dangling off a high ladder with a Phase One in one hand while the other grips the ladder tightly. Camera shake, framing, and safety are perhaps somewhat an issue here, but when the surprise monster flat lay is sprung upon you, it can get you out of a tight spot. Please don't attempt it yourself.
I don't mention it in the video, but when I use the C stand or super clamp option, I tend to tether my camera to it with either the strap of something similar, just in case it does drop. It is always good to have a backup plan.