Not so long ago, aerial photographs required hiring a photographer skilled in flying a helicopter and learning from it to take photos. Thanks to drone photography, you can now safely and easily capture the same images.
Drone photos look amazing when they are beautifully captured and attract the viewer immediately. There is no written manual to capture the best images because photography is an art; and there are no drone photography rules that guarantee stunning shots. Practice, dedication, and consistency make photos attractive.
With a quality drone and a bit of practice, you can become an expert with an eye for the best camera settings, perspective, and aerial angles. Great photos make you wonder how someone could think of such eye-opening, imaginative shots. Some techniques and tips will help. Below are five of them. Most of the tips apply to both ground and aerial photography. While learning about drone photography, have fun flying.
Light is a significant factor in capturing great photos. Indoor shots with drones require using a flash and other light source to brighten an image. The lighting gadget or flash works parallel to a drone to produce fabulous results.
Outdoor drone photography works with natural light during the day. The best source of light for excellent photos is the sun. At night, take advantage of pole lights, flashlights, oversized lamps, and other light sources. In low light, the camera shutter speed has a critical role. It needs to be adjusted according to the availability of light.
The shutter needs to be slow to make a portrait similar to that of a painter’s sketch. Use the tripod mode to avoid shaky pictures. With a slow shutter speed, be careful that your subject does not move from its position. A steady camera and subject produce miraculous results. Leverage hard light with fabric papers or light tents.
It would be best to address the composition behind the lens of a camera. That is not always possible with drone photography. Sometimes it is impossible to capture the ideal frame. Software editing tools allow cropping a photo for the optimum composition.
The two composition layouts used the most often are the ‘Rule of Thirds’ and the Triangle. Triangle images are pleasing to the eye and well-balanced. Important image objects are arranged in the shape of a triangle.
The ‘Rule of Thirds’ is the most relevant aspect of drone photography. It divides an image plane into nine sections like a tic-tac-toe board with two vertical and horizontal lines. A viewer’s eye is naturally drawn to the intersections of lines. They are the best places for image objects in an image. Photo editing also allows the removal of certain unwanted parts of an image.
Take Multiple Shots
Because you can edit photos, taking multiple shots of a scene helps when adding shadows and effects. Drone cameras have features, such as live photo or bracketing, that permit taking numerous shots of an image.
With this technique, you can find the best shots. Further editing produces fantastic results. The multiple or burst mode is excellent for shooting moving objects. It allows taking three to seven photos in quick succession. One is likely to be perfect.
The panoramic mode allows taking wide-angle shots. There are several panoramic modes – sphere, 180-degree, horizontal, and vertical. Each mode stitches many photos together to create large wide-angle images.
The horizontal mode uses nine photos, the vertical uses three, and the 180-degree mode stitches 21 photos together. Numerous sphere images are stitched together to create a sizeable spherical picture. Taking multiple exposures is a good idea for two reasons. Drone photography exposures limit reliance on a smartphone screen for image exposure. Secondly, images composed of numerous exposures create detailed photos. Auto Exposure Bracketing creates high dynamic range photos.
Choosing the auto mode of a camera places limits on particular settings and may result in something different than what you want. The manual mode allows changing the ISO settings of a camera for excellent aerial shots.
The ISO settings allow capturing a wide range of lighting conditions. A higher ISO value allows taking photos without using a camera’s built-in flash as light becomes darker. Drone photography is about resolution. The lower the ISO, the better the resolution is. You also have control over other settings, such as shutter speed.
There are no limits to practicing shots with the manual mode. Using the lowest setting ensures the maximum resolution of an image. The lowest ISO settings are between 100 and 200. Use them for top image quality when shooting outdoor subjects in sunlight and indoor static subjects or landscapes with a tripod.
Medium settings between 250 and 400 are used for dull weather scenes and capturing movement when lighting conditions are good. High settings between 500 and 800 are used for low light scenes, night photography, pop concerts, and capturing fast action in indoor or dull conditions.
The key to capturing stunning drone photos is the quality of the drone and camera. A drone that has a stable flying ability will produce excellent results. The drone pilot is also a significant factor. He or she has to manage the drone’s flight at the correct angles to take beautiful pictures.
Learning to fly needs to be a priority before concern of footage and aerial photographs. Getting a unique perspective from drones involves knowing how to take original photographic views not seen every day. Knowing the drone is more than being able to accurately and safely fly it.
It means knowing how to take advantage of the technology packed inside. Know the limits of a drone. Usually, the sensor is smaller than conventional digital cameras. You will not be able to capture the same dynamic range or details, especially in low light.
Utilizing the tips above are very important in real estate photography. Companies like Alex Photography use drones for the real estate photography services they offer. Along with the tips are links for further information about aerial photography.
Whether you received a drone as a gift or have been flying a drone for a while, the tips above will help improve aerial drone photography and take advantage of the eye in the sky you possess. Editing is an aspect that brings out the best in photos.
It is used to add contrast, cut videos the highlights, resize, straighten, and correct color. Software packages are available to help. There are similarities with land and aerial photography. A quality drone, camera, and some flight experience produce photos that surpass land photography.
Chris Hoefner is a landscape and portrait/street photography enthusiast from Germany and working at Alex Drone Photography. He has a keen interest in photo editing and technology. When he’s not out in the wild with his camera, he can be found trying to master the art of making flavorful coffee.