While lighting is an important consideration, the subject and what is included and excluded from a shot are more important than catching vibrant colors at sunrise. Drone cameras have a fixed aperture that gives depth to a photograph. They are not suitable for long exposures.
You cannot enhance a scene with blurred clouds or shallow depth—creativity rather than rules master drones aerial photography composition. Use your eyes to look differently at the world. The following techniques can help both beginners and professionals of drone photography to conquer the sky.
Use the ‘Rule of Thirds’
To avoid unneeded cropping, get the best composition when taking a shot. You lose precious pixels by rotating and cropping to correct the composition. Hopefully, your ground station app shows the third grid to aid in composition. It is an essential guide for getting shots straight.
Creating Something from Nothing
When flying over an area that seems uninteresting at first, look for things that seem out of place. Make those things the subjects of images. Using the ‘Rule of Thirds,’ place them at one of the intersecting points. Attenuate the colors when editing to increase their presence in the final images.
Fly the Drone to Get a New Perspective
Just because an object or scene has little appeal at ground level does not mean there is no new perspective in the air. Most landscapes and structures are designed in plan form. They typically have strong patterns and shapes or pleasing aesthetic features. Some excellent shots have been taken when the pilot thought there was nothing worth photographing from a ground perspective.
Learn to Fly the Drone Without GPS Assistance
Occasionally, drones lose the GPS signal. The drone automatically switches to ATTI mode. It can be unsettling and alarming when warning beeps from the ground station announce the error. Flown in windy conditions, a drone cannot hold its position and starts to drift.
If you can quickly adapt, you will avoid possible fly-away and crashes. The ATTI (attitude) mode remains stabilized and accurately locks flight altitude. Some drones produce more speed and power output in ATTI.
Use them as a performance advantage. As drones look for satellites, tall structures, hills, and mountains attenuate the signal. Knowing how to fly a drone in ATTI mode enables you to fly without the aid of GPS.
Stitch Panoramic Photos to Create Images with High Megapixels
Most drone cameras have relatively low megapixel counts when compared to CSC and SLR cameras. It limits how big an image can be printed and results in a loss of detail. A solution to overcoming the problem is flying over a subject in a coordinated pattern, taking a series of shots.
They can be stitched together with a software program. At times, flying at the maximum legal height of 400 feet is not enough to capture an entire scene. Resolve the issue by taking a series of shots. Overlap the adjacent frames to aid in a clean stitched image.
Compensate for Unexpected Conditions
Despite a weather forecast, conditions at a location may not be what you anticipated. Using your imagination, figure out how to process an image to create atmosphere and mood. Using the dodge and burn tool adds shade and light to develop foreboding images. Add a strong vignette to keep the eye in the frame. You can give an image a sense of enclosure, light the image above.
Subscribe to UAV Forecast
UAV Forecast gives pilots information needed to fly drones safely in a given period. It shows the availability of estimated GPS satellites, weather forecasts, restricted areas, and airports. It is an app that also reports solar flare activity referred to as the Kp index.
It measures on a scale from zero to nine (calm to a major storm). A Kp index below three or four is generally safe for flying. The higher the Kp index is, the more apt it is to have difficulty getting accurate GPS. Effects vary. Sometimes everything is fine; at other times, GPS is lost for seconds or a minute, or the GPS position is off by hundreds of yards.
Use Google Maps to Find New Locations
Finding new locations can be tricky, particularly when restrictions limit where you can fly drones. With Google Maps, you can find exciting compositions. You may have to ask permission of a property owner to fly over their property. Drone pilots have seen many owners welcome the requests with interest. Flying legally and safely prevents the hobby from becoming socially unacceptable.
Monitor ISO Speed
Small sensors do not perform well when ISO speeds are high. An ISO speed over 100 may introduce unwanted noise. Shots usually taken in auto mode should be changed to manual mode when a camera increases the ISO.
When using GPS mode, drones can be incredibly stable. When wind conditions are light, set the shutter speed to a low 1/16th of a second to use an ISO setting of 100. The result is a sharp, motion-free image. Multiple shots increase the chances of brilliant photos.
It is relatively easy to start snapping aerial shots with drones aerial photography. Capturing images that are worthy of being called drone photography takes a great deal of experience and effort. Flying is the easy part of drone photography, learning the art of composing from an aerial perspective takes some time and practice. The tips above are meant to improve the learning curve.