Guide to drone photography: How to capture stunning aerial shots like these

Drone Photography & Video Masterclass contains everything a photographer needs to take their camera into the skies; and everything a drone pilot needs to master aerial photography.

A revolution in photography is taking places above our heads. Drones are changing the way we look at the world. Recent advances in camera drone technology have made aerial photography available to more and more enthusiasts. Stills and videos that once required an aircraft or helicopter are now being shot with a drone carried in a backpack. Six million drones were shipped globally in 2015, and this is forecast to rise to 67 million annually by 2021.

A foggy night in Hong Kong. Andy Yeung took this amazing photo after taking off from the hills surrounding the cityAndy Yeung

Experienced multi-rotor pilot and photographer Fergus Kennedy has published a guide to realising the full potential of this burgeoning field. Drone Photography & Video Masterclass contains everything a photographer needs to take a craft confidently and expertly into the skies; and everything a drone pilot needs to master photographic techniques.

The book takes the view that successful drone photography is all about the shot, not the drone. So, while the reader is equipped with an essential introduction to drone technology, flying skills, safety measures, and legal requirements (the preflight checklist is a must-read), author Fergus Kennedy demonstrates how the skills of planning, composition, lighting, focus, and exposure remain essential to capturing great images.

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This book is an essential guide to elevating photography to new heights, but it isn't just a technical manual. It is packed with stunning aerial shots by award-winning photographers from around the world; from an erupting volcano and a bird's-eye photo of a whale with her calf to panoramic shots of the British coastline and dizzying cityscapes.

IBTimes UK publishes just a few of the book's beautiful aerial images, with permission from Ammonite Press.

Fog cascades from the cliff edge in West Bay, Dorset, United KingdomJames Loveridge
Camels in the Empty Quarter of OmanMiguel Willis
Shooting the opening sequence of BBC’s Top Gear required precise flying and careful coordination with the car drivers. DJI S1000 with Panasonic GH4Lec Park
A small lake on Skipwith Common, North Yorkshire. DJI Inspire X5David Hopley
A ditch zigzags across a field in Melbourne, Derbyshire, United Kingdom. DJI InspireDavid Hopley
Brighton Pier, East Sussex, United Kingdom. The pier was shot from 400ft altitude very early in the morning before it opened and the panorama stitched together  from 15 images. DJI Inspire Raw with 12mm f2 lensFergus Kennedy
Brighton Pier, East Sussex, United KingdomFergus Kennedy
Seals relax in the sun on a sandbank offshore from Chatham, Massachusetts, USA. DJI Phantom 3 ProfessionalAndy Deitsch
A Southern Right Whale and calf off the coast of Western AustraliaFredrik Christiansen/Murdoch University
Winter River in the Adirondack Mountains, Upstate New York, USAAndy Deitsch
Natural channels form an abstract composition in a saltmarsh in Essex, United Kingdom. The image is a composite of around 30 individual photos stitched together to cover a larger area. DJI Phantom 3 ProfessionalFergus Kennedy
Santiaguito Volcano in Guatemala erupts. DJI Phantom 2 with GoPro Hero 3 CameraFelix Von Aulock
Boats in a marina form an abstract pattern in Brighton Marina, East Sussex, United Kingdom. DJI Inspire Raw with 12mm f2 lensFergus Kennedy
Tree and tyre tracks, South AfricaEddie Oosthuizen
Beach huts and boats at Mudeford Spit in Dorset, UK. A vertical view from 400ft. DJI Phantom 3 ProfessionalFergus Kennedy
Colourful high rise buildings in Hong KongAndy Yeung
Crop triangle. Crops are planted in circles for easy irrigation near Pretoria, South Africa. DJI Phantom AdvancedEddie Oosthuizen

Drone Photography & Video Masterclassby Fergus Kennedy, RRP £16.99 is available July 2017, online and at all good bookshops.

Fergus Kennedy is a marine biologist, photographer, and film-maker, and an experienced multi-rotor pilot and camera operator. Through his company, Skylark Aerial Imaging, he provides aerial video, still photography, and 3D modelling services to clients including the BBC, ABC Television, Canon Europe, Love Productions, WWF, and the Royal Navy.

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