I realize drones are all the rage these days but I’ll admit a serious prejudice against using them for aerial still photography. I call it the ‘big picture’, the ability to use a full resolution DSLR Nikon camera with high quality lenses that can cover both wide & tight views, adjusting to the aesthetic quality of the image (ie. the "artist's" interpretation). Just try doing that with a drone.
I’m not totally against drones, they're great for video and low altitude work but if you want get high and wide, with high quality digital files shot through beautiful Nikon lenses, you have to use a helicopter. Many clients don’t realize how cheap they are, hourly rates start at about $250 for a R22 out of Seattle’s Boeing Field, just a minute's flying time from downtown Seattle. Plus there’s also a lot of yahoos out there with drones without proper FAA licenses or insurance, so be careful who you hire.
I’ve shot numerous aerial assignments, including for my regular shipbuilding client Vigor Industrial, Microsoft’s sprawling Redmond campus, local landscape architects and photo shoots of US Navy destroyers undergoing sea trials far out to sea.
So if you need aerials, go for the big picture. Plus, you can take your kids (or client) to work in a helicopter (right). Try doing that with a drone!