YOUR SAAVA STYLING SURFACE
All my styling surfaces are made by hand, and thus are perfectly unique. I only use natural, plastic-free and non-toxic paints on organic cotton canvas. Follow the instructions below, so you can enjoy your surface for a long time!
Your Saava surface is rollable, but it is best not to fold it or roll it up too tightly. Roll it up on a flat surface before packing it and storing it in the container it was shipped to you in.
If your surface creases or wrinkles, it is possible to carefully iron it from the unpainted side. Please note that the styling surface contains a small amount of natural wax which can soften while you iron the surface. Lay your styling surface flat on even ground, like your floor or a table, and use baking paper or some natural fabric underneath so the wax won’t stain the table/floor.
A tabletop studio set-up is perfect for smaller products, floral arrangements and other styled settings that need a base and backdrop. Place one half of your surface on a table (next to a window, so your lighting is ideal - see image above) and lift the other half up, so that your surface is set in a rounded L-shape. You can attach the top part of the surface to your wall, a shelf, a special T-shape stand like I am using in the example above, use a box or anything else in the right height. Use clamps or masking tape to attach. Now you can start styling!
If the light falling in from the window is too harsh, try softening it with a white, sheer curtain. If the shadows on the other side of your products are too deep, try bouncing some light back by placing a large white surface (cardboard, art canvas, etc) parallel to the window on the shadow side of your surface. I'll be sharing more detailed tutorials on this on my Instagram stories, so head on over there and check my highlights every now and again.
Flatlay pictures are a distinct favourite for many smaller products. Stationery, tools, smaller handicrafts, jewelry or for instance the soaps I photographed in the above images all look great in flatlay styled images.
The most important thing you'll need for a good flatlay shot is great light, so pick up your surface and walk it around. Try it out in different locations, place a couple of products on top and take some test shots with your phone camera. Often the light may seem all right to the naked eye, but only through the lens, we can see if the light is really ideal.
Tip: our eyes are used to seeing shadows on the right or bottom (or a mix of both) of the object we look at, do be sure to set up your surface and shoot in that way.
Using your surface as backdrop
If a white wall is too dull or a busy background needs covering, you can easily use a larger Saava styling surface as a backdrop to a styled setting or for example a portrait shoot. Tape your surface to the wall with masking tape, attach it to a shelf with cloth pins or tape, use a backdrop holder or simply let an assistant hold up the surface for you.
For ideal lighting, follow the tips above. A good portrait is usually shot outside at bright daylight in the shade.
If needed, you can wipe your surface clean with a damp cloth. Since the materials used are all natural, the surface is technically food-safe, but some foods may leave lasting stains on the surface.
Follow me on Instagram for more tips and tricks on how to use your Saava styling surface.
I'll share lots of looks behind the scenes, little video tutorials and advice by stylists and photographers on how to get the most out of your product and lifestyle photography.
For specific questions or troubleshooting, just shoot me a DM or join one of my Q&A lives.
See you there!