I'm happy to announce I've finally overcome by resistance to using drones in my photography. I've been photographing from helicopters for years and always love getting up high with my Nikons and using some beautiful glass (lenses) to capture high resolution images. I was hesitant to use drones for stills for years because the quality just wasn't there but this summer I started seeing some still photography work from drones that helped me overcome my prejudices and I have now invested in the training, licensing and equipment to be a FAA licensed, commercial drone pilot (and photographer!). While I'll still work from helicopters, the drone gives me the ability to work lower than 400 feet, in more remote locations or in tighter urban spaces, using the same photographic vision I use in all my work.
Since passing the required the Part 107 exam, my official title according to the FAA is the "Pilot in Command”, although my kids will hopefully continue to question my authority. The license will allow me to add drone images to my still photography offerings and I’ll be working with a Mavic Pro Zoom which allows for both wide angle and zoom images (using a 24-50mm mechanical lens) creating beautiful 4000 x 3000 pixel raw files, ideal for web or print use.
So let me know if you need anything photographed. Drone work is obviously more complicated and requires some extra legwork to check if a shoot is in controlled airspace (where authorization can often be approved quickly through the FAA's a LAANC system) and lookup weather forecasts etc. However, doing this work right is worth the time, giving clients the peace of mind of knowing they are working with a fully licensed and insured professional drone pilot who also has the skills to create beautiful and unique images.