4 Things You Should Already Be Using A Drone For

Drones have revolutionized the way moments can be captured and shared. Whereas just a few years ago the only options for aerial photography were hiring a plane or helicopter, today you can get an aerial perspective for a few hundred dollars. With drone technology where it is now, high definition footage of any occasion can be obtained at a very reasonable price. The accessibility to drone photography has brought us into the future of event planning where even the smallest gatherings can be turned into great memories.

Weddings

Aerial photography is the perfect way to make your fantasy wedding video a reality. Capture breathtaking shots of your wedding venue from above and get creative with the way your reception is filmed. Show off all the best aspects of your unforgettable day without worrying about where you should have your photographer set up.

When hiring a  drone photographer for your wedding, you must consider whether you want them to shoot your whole wedding including the ground production, or if you just want them to take the aerial shots. If all you want is a few aerial pictures and maybe a video, prices start considerably cheaper. For full air and ground production you should expect to pay $400 – $500/hr. When hiring an operator for full production, it is common for them to cut you a deal on editing.

Festivals/concerts

Using drone footage to create amazing marketing and event recap videos is the next big thing! Festivals and concerts are usually bigger events that take a lot of planning to run smoothly. Drone photography is the perfect tool to avoid your hard work going unnoticed. With an aerial perspective event planners can now show off event locations, crowds of people and their set up like never before.

Due to the large amount of people at the location of the shoot there is increased liability; in some cases operators might have to get additional insurance to be able to fly their drone. Depending on whether an operator has to get special permits and if you want full air and ground coverage (multiple cameras), pricing will increase to the $500-$600/hr range.

Parties

Make your next party unforgettable with some awesome shots of the fun! Even with a small budget you can still capture amazing moments. Paying for 1hr of an operator’s time usually includes 20-40mins of flight time, which is enough to get plenty of pictures and some videos. If you’re looking to have ground production as well, then prices will increase accordingly.

Sports/Action

If you want to make an engaging hype video for your coming season or be able to review your team’s strategy during a match, there is no better way to do it than from a bird’s eye view. By using a drone to follow the action you can guarantee you don’t miss any of it due to a bad angle or being too far away. Drone’s offer sports and action fanatics a new way to re-live their experiences.

Shooting drone footage for sporting events involves an increased amount of liability. Furthermore, it adds a level of difficulty; it requires almost continuous footage over an extended period of time. This means operators have to come prepared with multiple batteries and will have to follow the action as it takes place, all while minding their surroundings and the safety of athletes and spectators.

Events Pricing Infograph

What should I expect if I hire a drone photographer?

Matt Austin, owner and operator of Aerial Imaging Resource, took some time to talk to us about what someone should expect when hiring a drone photographer.

“A client should expect you to scout the location of the shoot.” According to Matt, this can be done either in person or using Google Earth on his computer. He says expert drone operators make sure anything unwanted that could be in the shot is moved or they take note to avoid it when shooting later. Another important step in an operator’s preparation is knowing the sunlight conditions for optimal light on what they want to showcase in their footage.

Once at the job, a client should expect to see their operator go through a pre-flight checklist and setup, ensuring everything is in working order before flying their drone. “It usually takes about twenty minutes depending on the setup and if you are running manual or automatic controls,” commented Matt about the procedure he goes through before getting his drone airborne. Some expert operators will even go through a checklist multiple times before arriving at a shoot.

When hiring a professional you can also expect help in acquiring the shots you envision. If clients provide specific information about what they want, operators are able to incorporate that vision in their process from storyboard to post-production. “We usually go through the jpeg photographs with the client and see which ones they want post produced,” says Matt about involving his clients in the process. When contacting an operator about a job you should know if you want your photos and videos edited. If you want an edited video you should give the operator an idea of both the length and purpose of the video before the shoot so they can ensure they get the best shots. Drone photographers usually offer a 24-48 hour turnaround time on the projects they are hired to shoot and have an option to expedite that process for a price.

Matt believes that the biggest selling point of using drone photography for outdoor events is that for the price of a ground set up (or cheaper) anyone can get regular footage and the additional aerial perspective. The difference between just zero and fifty feet makes a world of difference.

How To Get Started

Drone operators are ready to fly all around the United States. Websites like HiFlyPhotography.com help you find professional aerial photography no matter where you are or what your project is.