Benefits / Resources / Articles
December 04, 2018

Be Careful! How to Fly a Drone Safely

You’ve just bought yourself a fancy, new drone and you can’t wait to take it to the sky! However, before you do that, there are a few things you’ll want to understand. Drone photography isn’t the same as regular photography, so here’s some tips on how to safely fly your drone for the first time:

1. Read the manual. Drones are made up of all kinds of components, and for beginners, these parts can be confusing to operate. Thumb through the manual, and make sure you understand all the technology before you send your drone into the sky. You don’t want a flight to end with a broken drone, so read the manual, and make sure you understand how to calibrate your drone correctly.

2. Think about more than just lighting. A drone isn’t a normal camera, so you need to think beyond whether or not the lighting is good. You have to consider weather factors like rain, wind, or fog and how it can affect your drone flight and your photos.

3. Gain a new perspective. Taking drone photography is much different than taking photos with a regular camera. You have to deal with height, distance, angle, and more, so you’ll have to develop a new eye for drone photography. Train yourself to see the compositions in three dimensions, so you can get the best photo possible.

4. Use it like a tripod in the sky. Drones today have stable three-axis gimbals, making low-light photography possible. Some systems are so advanced they can achieve a sharp image in just 8 seconds.

5. Be responsible. Drones accompany the sky with airplanes, helicopters, and other aircraft, so you have to be vigilant while you’re flying. Download available mobile apps that alert you of aircrafts in the sky. They will help you observe the area where you’re planning on flying, so you know it’s safe. If you’re within 5 miles of an airplane, notify authorities, and let them know about your drone flight so everyone can remain safe. You can learn more about air laws at

6. Get training. Taking an hour or two to learn the basic skills to operate a drone will help you avoid unfortunate crashes and keep everyone safe.

7. Be an ambassador. If you see someone watching you fly your drone, talk to them! Educate them about what you’re doing, answer their questions, and show them all the advantages of owning a drone. Consider pro bono work to support your right to fly, in order to protect all drone photographers.

Read the full article on the Professional Photographer Magazine, and if you want to stay updated with all the latest drone and photography news, become a member of Professional Photographers of America today!