In the past make photos from the air was very hard and expensive. Now, thanks to the technology and new “user-friendly” device, it is possible to make fantastic aerial photos in few minutes.
Aerial photos are great if you want to snap to a nice panorama, a scene in a wedding or simply an hotel with a nice swimming pool for an advertising campaign.
So… what do you need if you want to snap your first aerial photos?
- First of all, a pole. We use the MagicPole 5m (from AerialClick.com), a very light fiberglass telescopic pole able to extend till 5 meters and carry on a camera till 6 Kg of weight.
- A reflex camera. We suggest a Canon or Nikon DSLR able to connect to a wi-fi device in order to shoot from the ground. We use the Nikon D3200 plus WU-1a. In this way it is possible to connect the camera to the android device (via Nikon Wireless Mobile Utility, free on the Android Market).
- A remote device. Very useful to snap from remote and see in real time what the camera is doing from the air. We use a HTC device, but all the android devices are ok.
Are you ready? Let’s go!
Set up the camera
It’s really important to set up the camera before install it on the pole. The remote device can only snap the photo, but not control all the parameters. There are some more expensive tools like Camranger that are able to focus on a certain point and also apply some effects… but it’s another story.
With our Nikon D3200 we usually set up the ring on position A (aperture), focus at 18mm, f/7.1 aperture and ISO 100. No flash for more realistic colors.
Connect the Nikon D3200 with the WU-1a to the android device and open the Nikon Wireless Mobile Utility app. Test is everything is ok and try to snap some photo… just to try if everything’s ok.
Mount the camera on the pole
It’s very easy and fast. MagicPole 5m is sold togetherwith a manfrotto head, very stable and useful to connect any kind of camera.
Connect the camera to the manfrotto head and check if there is some play. For safety no play must be exist!
Click on the safety lock of manfrotto head… everything is ready to go up!
Ready to snap aerial photo? So place one foot on the MagicPole 5m ground connection (connection in plastic to ensure a great stability and reduce vibration) and go up, go up, go up. Attention to not pass the red lines at the end of each section of magic pole or it could be dangerous for stability!
So… reach the 5m? Look into your android device, move your MagicPole wherever you want (there a spherical joint on the ground able to move in every direction, always with great stability) and… shoot shootshoot! Your aerial photo is done, it’s totally new perspective, very unusual but also different and nice!
It’s easy? Now it’s your turn to practice with pole photography!
Some differences between ground and aerial level