I am often asked why I have drones in my photographic / video toolbox. Most seem to think they are big boys’ toys. Not inexpensive, but a toy nonetheless.
Any if I do have a drone, why do I not use an $89 one from a toy store as against an $800 (or more) one from a company like DJI?
Well to answer the 2nd question first, an $89 drone is fine for the very beginner. Why? Because you will crash and destroy it. That’s a given. While learning to fly, things tend to get in the way, you find your reflexes are not what they should be, you’ll confuse left and right and what’s more, the $89 drone is just not meant to act or behave like an $800 one does.
So, when learning, crash that $89 beast by all means. And crash it again. And when you stop crashing move on to a proper drone.
As for the first question. Whilst I could drone on and on (see what I did there) about what a drone can do blah, blah, the proof is simply in the pudding. What do you prefer, a shot like this?
Or footage like this?
Here are two more examples.
And when you get more and more experience, you find better and better ways to utilise a drone inside your existing photography or video workflow.
It’s a bit like asking whether you could use a Pentax mirrorless when you are used to a Box Brownie. Or whether DaVinci Resolve (which is free by the way) as a video editing program could make better visuals for you than a Powerpoint slide show. ie: A no brainer when you think about it.
And besides, drones are the most fun you can have when not … well… whatever.
As you may have guessed, I use DJI drones – I have a Mini 2, Air2S and an FPV and each has a different purpose in my shooting workflow. There are other models now available too, and you can see them at https://www.dji.com/au
The capabilities of modern drones are just breathtaking. Go on. Have a read through the specifications and see what they can do. You will be very surprised.
And finally, have a look at some of the footage and stills shot on drones, especially DJI ones, at the various Facebook groups dedicated to the purpose. A good Australian one is https://www.facebook.com/groups/nosheriffs. Especially look out for images from on Jim Picot. Simply stunning.