Drone photography is continuously expanding and changing the way photography is done in the modern world. From small, handheld drones controlled by your mobile device all the way to full-sized helicopter style drones, this new style of aerial photography is an excellent way to expand your skills as a photographer.
Drone photography is an amazing way to capture beautiful scenery from an entirely new perspective.
To help us learn more about drone photography, we worked with photographer Teddy Hoffman. He showed us around the city of Chicago to find some awesome locations and teach us some tips and tricks about drone photography. Learn more and see some of his awesome work below!
Teddy Hoffman is a drone photographer from Chicago who shoots with a Phantom DJI drone. Small in size, but very durable, the Phantom DJI is a beast of a drone featuring multiple flight modes, tapfly, and activetrack technology. With a high performance camera shooting in 4k at 30 fps and 1080p at 120 fps while resting on a 3-axis gimbal, the Phantom DJI has a perfect, balanced camera giving you crystal clear shots with no vibration or bumps in your video footage.
Teddy also told us that earlier on in his career when flying drones, they would fly off due to frequency interference, heavy winds, and other external radio frequencies. Now, with advanced technologies and better roaming competence, drones much better. They are very well made and very affordable.
While exploring Chicago with Teddy, we visited plenty of unique areas where we shot including the six-points intersection in Wicker park, the lakefront along Lake Michigan, South Loop, and much more. Being able to have a new view of the city from hundreds of feet up is a big change. It gives you perspective. Just the view from that high up can make you think of photography differently.
Some advice from Teddy to new drone photographers:
- Learn to fly in open space before trying any tricky maneuvers in rough terrain or bad locations where you could lose your drone.
- Be very careful flying drones in cities. Watch for helicopters and other low-flying aircrafts.
- Look at composition differently from the air and look for different angles.
- Use Google Earth’s aerial views to scout awesome locations to shoot before going out with your drone.
- Plan Ahead – Always plan your flight path in advance to ensure your flight plan goes accordingly. Stay up to date on current weather and beware how it can affect your flight.
- Safety First – Do not fly over people or large crowds.
- Do not fly over 400 feet, as you will be entering airspace at 400ft.
- If you plan on flying commercially you will need to obtain your FAA 107. Learn more on faa.gov.
- Stay up to date on the ever changing rules and regulations from the FAA. A good place to start is the FAA’s resource page on Unmanned Aircraft Systems, which details current US drone laws and prohibitions.
We will soon be releasing an interview with Teddy as well to showcase his amazing action sports and adventure photography work. Stay updated by signing up to our email newsletter and following us on Instagram, you don’t want to miss out!