7 Common Mistakes When Choosing Aerial Photography Services

The trend of having amazing shots made with a DSLR attached to a drone in marketing campaigns, brochures, websites, or in social media marketing campaigns, is definitely emerging in the business world. Besides the fact that is very popular, aerial photography has other implications, too. It requires a lot of skill and knowledge to be successful at it, and it also brings a certain dose of danger. And, on top of that, the equipment for aerial photography is very expensive.

This is why businesses are commonly outsourcing drone photography to drone photography providers. Since this is an entirely new field, there is a lot of uncharted ground, causing you to experience some inconveniences. So, if you want to choose a drone photography provider and stay on the safe side, whether you are a representing a business or an individual, make sure to avoid these mistakes when choosing such a provider.

Is Aerial Photography the Right Choice?

It is very important to consult several photography experts about the project you are planning. When you successfully communicate your idea about what are you trying to accomplish, experts will advise on what is the best solution for your scenario. Aerial photography services are expensive, and you don’t want to be paying for something that will have the same or a worse effect than other solution.

If it’s some simple project which includes only a few shots, you can do it with the help of some friend that has a drone. The trick here is to know your own needs or your business’s requirements. Only then can you find out how to accommodate those.

Choosing a Provider That Uses Low-Quality Equipment

Aerial photography is not that different than standard photography regarding gear. It can be only more demanding since there is one more piece of tech involved – a drone. You have to know that drone providers are not using the same equipment. Currently, on the market, there are quite a lot options when aerial photography equipment is in question. And, the quality of the equipment will, in a great deal, have an impact on the photos you will receive as the end product.

The best players in the drone photography service provider game are the ones that are using completely customized systems. So, open your eyes for companies who are using high-quality digital camera backs, lenses, and the latest drones. This way, you will get high-quality images which you can use on large formats at your exhibitions, brochures, and website.

Forgetting to Check Their Legal Information

A regulatory environment for businesses that are using a drone as part of their services is very complex. When you are doing business, you have to make sure that you completely stay on the legal side of things in order to avoid paying penalties. You have to pay attention to flying operations for aerial photography permits and copyrights. For instance, in Europe, all flying operations have to operate under the procedures and regulations of the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) and Civil Aviation Authority (CAA). If you use the services of a company that violates these regulations, you will not be able to use the images they sell to you. Make sure to check for such regulations in your country before signing a contract with service providers.

Another important thing to pay attention to is Copyright. Photographers who take photos have all the rights. If you are planning to reuse the old photos or get them edited by professionals, make sure that the proper copyright documentation and agreements are signed off. Bear in mind that a breach of copyright is a very serious offense, which you want to avoid by all means.

Choosing Before Checking the Topics They Cover

You want to make sure to hire a drone photography provider that specializes in operating in the field that you need. The common mistake people make when choosing an aerial photography services is to get a provider specializing in, let’s say, natural landscapes, while they need the shots of transport. At first sight, it might seem that drone photography is always the same, but the subtle differences are really there, and they will affect the quality of the images you get.

Overseeing Their Portfolios

Choosing a drone photography provider before seeing their previous work is not advised. You absolutely have to take a look at their past projects. A good company will have a website with a portfolio subsection, with a lot of sample images categorized by the topic of the “photo session,” such as industry, sports events, cities, nature landscapes, etc.

This is really important because you will not only be able to check if they’ve already done what you need, but also the quality of their past work. If they don’t have their past work on display, make sure to ask them to email their images to you.

Neglecting Clients’ Testimonials

Client’s testimonials are another way to make sure that you are choosing a good company for your project. Again, a good company should have such a subsection on their website. If this is not the case, make sure to check their social media profiles and take a look at the comments of people. There must be a client who talked about their services. If not, just be open about it with them and ask them about their clients. As a last resort, try to contact their clients and ask for their opinions; you will be surprised what people can tell you once you ask them politely.

Post-Flight Production Isn’t Included in the Price

Post-flight production is just a fancy name for image post-processing in the world of aerial photography. It is important to know if the provider is offering those services so that you can compare prices on the market. Aerial photos will most likely have to be edited before they can be used. This is why it is important to know in advance if they can edit them or not so that you can plan your budget. After all, you can always outsource image post processing to another company.


Next up: The Bare Essential Photography Kit for Street Photographers

Previously: Understanding Stops in Photography – an Easy Beginner’s Guide


As you can see, besides some specifics, many things from the standard “how to choose an outsourcing partner” package apply to this scenario, too. You top priorities are to check their credibility, previous clients’ testimonies, and to make sure that they are using the newest technologies. If you want to get exactly what you want, make sure to have face to face with the drone photography company representatives. Having a good communication with outsourcing partners is of the utmost importance, and it is considered as the factor that determines the project’s success.

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Isabella Foreman

Isabella Foreman

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