Interesting Facts About Aerial Photography You Need to Know

Aerial photography means taking photographs from the air. But it involves more than riding a helicopter or aircraft and flying up there to capture photos. As an industry, it makes it possible to get spectacular views of new construction, well sites, natural disasters, stunning landscapes, and more. Also, the rise of drone use in the field of aerial photography is fast changing the landscape. If you’re interested in using aerial photography as a means to gather data, here are a few interesting facts you’d want to know.


Then and Now Methods

In the past, aerial photographers resorted to a variety of methods. Historical accounts mention the use of rockets, balloons, and kites in an attempt to get cameras in the air. They also used pigeons. In a similar vein, aerial photography was thought to be an attempt to see the world as the birds do. High costs and risks plagued the first half-century of aerial photography, though, the Science Direct says. The invention of powered flight led to more developments, such as the use of airplanes and helicopters as well as parachutes for modern aerial photographers. Drones and blimps are now used as well.

First Aerial Photographer

Gaspar Felix Tournachon was a balloonist and credited as the first aerial photographer. The Frenchman published his aerial photographs under the pseudonym “Nadar.” He used the collodion wet plate process. Throughout the process, the photographic material had to be coated, sensitized, exposed, and developed in a portable darkroom for about 15 minutes. He successfully did all that from his hot air balloon. 

Fields That Used Aerial Photography

The first field to use aerial photography was archeology, in pursuit of scientific advancement. It has since been used in many other fields such as real estate, mapping, landscape studies, aerial surveys, construction, advertising, and more. With the use of modern technology, such as geographic information systems, aerial photographs are now used for a wide range of applications.

Two Basic Forms of Aerial Photographs

When aerial photographs are taken, they’re either in oblique or vertical form, the Environmental Science says. Both have their uses and applications. However, black and white imaging is still the preferred option over colored images, mostly because of cost concerns. Also, it’s easier to pick out features because of the contrasting black, white, and greys.

Not the Same as Air-to-Air Photography

Some people confuse aerial photography with air-to-air photography. There’s a difference between the two. In aerial photography, you take pictures of objects on the ground. Air-to-air photography focuses on taking pictures of aircraft in the air.

Aerial drone photography

Choosing a Photographer

Whatever your needs are, finding the right photographer will ensure that you get the materials you need. Look for a photography studio with a trusted track record and reputation in the field. Investing in drones may seem like a good idea if you’re using the DIY approach. But working with professional photographers who have the technical expertise, knowledge, and equipment to pull this off is a much better use of your resources.