Getting started with drone photography: The Do’s and Don’ts

Getting started with drone photography: The Do’s and Don’ts

Drones have assumed such an important place in the arsenal of a videographer that it’s almost impossible to think of shooting something without drones being a part of the mix somewhere. Of course, I am referring to private use drones that are lighter and smaller than commercial or military drones. If you’re thinking of flying your drone for the first time, here are a few pointers you would be better off keeping in perspective.

Drone laws vary from country to country and from region to region within the same country. Some countries have stricter laws for flying drones, while others are more lenient. You’ve to check the laws applicable in the country you live in and the local laws in this regard. However, these standard safeguards are universal and observed across all countries and regions.

Register your drone before you start anything. Most countries have a process where every private individual owning a drone must register the device with the federal government’s civil aviation department or any appropriate government organization to handle such a process.

Don’t fly drones over government buildings, military establishments, courts, and other high-security zones, such as official residences of government members. You can figure out that this covers all government buildings, law enforcement and military establishments and other institutions related to national security.

Don’t fly overpopulated places or areas such as streets, major thoroughfares, and public spaces. This prevents a drone from crashing and injuring any unsuspecting person. Of course, drones are often used in traffic management, crowd management, and patrolling purposes. However, these are flown by certified individuals operating them on behalf of law enforcement agencies or approved in advance by authorities.

Do not fly them over private properties such as someone’s house, lawn, or ranch without the express permission of the owner of such property. As a real estate photographer or videographer, your job is to fly drones over private properties, but in that instance, you’re cleared by the property owner. However, keep in mind that you must have general liability insurance before undertaking such a project. This will cover you from any damages to the property in the event you crash your drone.

Practice makes a man perfect. Perfect the art of flying drones over open fields within a stipulated altitude (400 feet, depending on the country you belong to). Ensure you’re comfortable with the manual controls and that the drone operates as expected within the maximum controller distance, among other parameters.