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Planning a Professional Drone Photoshoot

Organizing a professional drone photo shoot presents unique challenges to many photographers. It requires careful craft and planning, but it can result in excellent photography that suits any need, from artistic to professional.

The key to planning a professional drone photoshoot is developing a basic overall strategy, planning it out in the details, and then getting out there and shooting. 

How To Plan a Photoshoot

The earliest stage of planning a professional drone photo shoot requires a basic overall strategy. Before a professional drone photographer goes on location, they’ll need to speak to the client to understand their vision for the photoshoot. The first step is to decide whether you want video, still images, or a combination of both. 

Afterward, you’ll decipher the types of images that your client wants captured. Many commercial or industrial clients require a combination of high- and low-level shots. Lastly, you’ll choose the right drone for the job. A professional photoshoot will require a drone with a long battery life, a large sensor camera with HD capabilities, and a good video remote feed to shoot from a farther distance.

Drone Photographer Scouts the Location

Aerial drone photography has more pre-production planning than you might think. Before shoot day arrives, you and your client will need to scout the location and make sure that it’s a functional space to execute your photoshoot. Take a few test shots beforehand to get the lay of the land. Afterward, storyboard the shoot in a way that aligns with the client’s vision. Storyboarding can be as simple as creating a flight plan or mapping out the area to determine where the drone will fly.

The next step is one of the essential drone photography tips: Keep a watchful eye on the weather. Traditional weather forecasts are a good indicator, but real-time observations via a smartphone app can also be helpful if inclement weather is nearby. However, apps may not be an option if the shoot is located outside your phone’s coverage area.

The Professional Photoshoot 

The last step in how to plan a professional drone photoshoot is the pre-flight check. You’ll need to have all your equipment clean and adequately charged. Also, you’ll need to have the imaging cards ready before you begin. The last thing you’d want to do is take a ton of photos but have nowhere to store them. 

Once everything’s ready, you can take off and start the shoot. Start filming your video or capturing your still images before the storyboard’s starting point. It’s best to keep shooting even after your scene because it’ll give you more footage to work with and photos you or your client might find captivating.

Mastering the Editing Process

While keeping your client’s wishes in mind, you should make the finished product look just the way you envision it. The editing process is your opportunity to play around with the look and vibe of what you shot. It’s hard work, but most aerial drone photography experts agree that it’s enjoyable. You can fine-tune the colors you want, make any final edits, and choose the photos that will best serve your client’s needs. Once you master the process, it should only take up to two hours before you have a finished product that’s sure to engage and captivate.

Other Drone Photography Tips

A common mistake many drone photographers make is they end up planning their shots around the flight. Instead, you should storyboard the photos and then plan the flight around those. If you’re working with a subject or model, make sure that they’re comfortable helping you out and satisfied with the finished product before making it public. If you’re looking for some extra inspiration before shoot day arrives, you can check out other photographers’ social media pages.

Get Started

Contact our team of experts at Aerial Innovations Southeast to see how we can help you with all of your architectural, aerial, and drone photography needs.