frequently asked questions

image33

So what is so special about aerial drone photography and how can it benefit myself or my business?

There are many reasons. With drones you are able to capture the entirety of a property or object that ground based photos simply cannot capture. Want to show off the full scope, unique perspective and beauty of a property, building or other structure? My drones can do that. Another is cost. Go ahead and look up what the cost would be for a photographer in a helicopter or aircraft to capture aerial images. When you do, you'll easily see that drones are a fraction of the cost. Another benefit of drones is the ability to maneuver the drone, even in tight spaces, to capture the perfect image.  

image34

What does FAA Part 107 Certificated mean?

By federal law any drone pilot who sells or otherwise uses aerial imagery "in furtherance of a business" must attain a Part 107 license. The fines are pretty steep for pilots who sell imagery without attaining a Part 107 license. Further, purchasers of imagery from a non-certificated drone pilot and who use the imagery in a commercial capacity can also face steep fines. The FAA (Federal Aviation Administration) doesn't mess around with this law, thus by all means do ask to see my license. I'd be more than glad to show you. 

What is the process and session price to get some aerial stills from you?

Prices begin for aerial stills at $75/session. The first step is to give me a call or shoot me an email with a description of the site (residential home, business building, raw land, etc.) and I'll call you back to discuss your session. In order to check if there are any airspace restrictions in the area of the site, please do include an address or a close intersection. I generally consider a "session" to consist of ~15-20 .jpeg non-post session edited  (Photoshop/Lightroom) aerial stills, to last around and hour or less and be at one specific location. This is plenty of time for me to get a lot of great images for you to chose from. If you would like some before, during and after's for projects like construction (vertical and horizontal),  landscaping, roofing replacement, pool installations, solar panel installation, etc. where I am to return to the same location at specified date spans I'm sure we can work out a deal. 

What does airspace restrictions mean?

As you can see by the image on this page with the two large blue circles, there are airspace restrictions in the greater Waco area. Some of the restrictions in the blue areas mean I can only fly to certain altitudes and some areas I cannot fly at all. The FAA does have a waiver process thankfully though. If a waiver is needed I will take care of that, but keep in mind the FAA does not have to approve the waiver request. Some waiver requests can take just a few clicks via an app and some can take up to 90 days to be approved. Further, there may be Texas State drone laws involved also (even outside of the blue areas). All of this is my responsibility to research and let you know as I am planning the session. This is why knowing the exact location of the session in these blue areas and the scope of the session will assist me in planning the flight and notifying you if there are any FAA pre-flight requirements. 

Can you fly directly over and take photos of people, such as at a football game or other sporting event?

Not at this time. Currently, the FAA prohibits commercial drone pilots to fly "directly" over people without an approved waiver and required safety equipment. I am in the process of acquiring the required safety parachute system (not cheap) which will allow me to legally fly over people.  

How long will it take to get photographs from you after the session?

If you meet me at the site, pretty much immediately. I'll land my drone, transfer the photos to my laptop and let you review them. Once you select the photos, I'll email the full size images to you via Google Drive.. 

Do I have any say in which angles, altitudes and distances you take each picture from?

Of course you do! In fact, one of my first questions to a client is "What do you want me to highlight from this session?".  The front, the back, the pool, the property size, the lake, the stock ponds, etc. As for altitude, so long as there are no other airspace restrictions, my maximum altitude mandated by federal law is 400 feet. The 400 feet max is above ground level (AGL). However, if you have a structure, say a tall tower that is 800 feet tall, and you would like me to take some images of the top area of the tower I can fly above 400 feet AGL so long as I stay within a 400 feet radius of the tower. Pertaining to distance from the object,  my drones are very stable and very controllable. Thus, I can get close to objects (i.e. for aerial inspection purposes) to get highly detailed images, but I will not get so close that an unexpected gust would cause my drone to collide with the object. 

image35

What if it is raining or otherwise bad weather on the day of the scheduled session?

Mother nature does have a vote as to if I can go airborne or not. Aside from Federal Laws, certain weather is not conducive for a safe flight. 

Can you take night time aerial photos?

Yes, I am authorized by the FAA to fly my drone during hours of darkness in certain airspace.  My FAA Part 107.29 waiver number is 107W-2019-05290.

Can I hire you to take aerial stills of a property and/or home I am thinking about buying?

Yes, so long as you attain and I verify the current property owner or legal resident allows this and is aware . I will not fly directly over private property without the owner's, legal resident's or manager's (such as with an apartment complex or office building complex) approval. 

What happens if you're taking some aerial images, your drone suffers a catastrophic failure and crashes onto a car parked in the driveway and causes damage?

I have a $500,000 liability policy in case this happens and though I do maintain my drones and perform pre-flight checks, the possibility of my drone crashing and causing damage to property is still there. I am currently insured by BWI, the nation's largest aviation specific insurance company, who has been in business since 1955.  As with my Part 107 license, if you would like to see my policy just ask. I'd be happy to show you. 

What about aerial video?

Of course I can do video!  If you would like some video or for me to make a video for you just reach out to me.

In closing.

These are some of the major FAQs, but if you have a question please don't hesitate to shoot me an email or give me a call.