Aerial photography helicopter tips

The Best Photography Tips for Your Next Helicopter Ride

New York City is one of the most beautiful, photogenic places in the world. With the Statue of Liberty, Central Park, Brooklyn Bridge, and more within your reach, there’s no shortage of amazing photo subjects. Even if you have experience with photography of New York on land, it’s simply a completely different mesmerizing experience in the air. Here are some tips to get the best aerial shots from a bird’s eye view.


Pick the right time of day

The sunlight is your light source, so you’ll want to keep this in mind when booking your flight. Shooting right before sunset or in late mornings is ideal, as the light is softer at these times when compared to midday. If you’re on Instagram, you probably know that #goldenhour is the perfect time for gorgeous photos — the same is true whether your subjects are people, buildings, or the water!


Get assistance

One hour may seem like a lot, but it can go by fast if you’re not used to shooting from the air. Luckily, you don’t have to figure all this out on your own. For an additional fee, we’ll have a seasoned aerial photography instructor join your flight and guide you through lens settings, shooting angles, and more. You’ll end up with incredible aerial shots of classic New York landmarks such as Central Park, Yankee Stadium, Midtown and Uptown Manhattan, and much more.


Use the right camera settings

It doesn’t matter if you have the right camera or lens if you’re not using the right settings. Since you’ll be taking photos while traveling through the air, take care to use the correct shutter speed. Avoid using the fully automatic shutter speed because you will have little control in how your photos turn out. Using the right shutter speed will ensure that your picture turns out clear and sharp.


Choose the right aircraft

If you’re shooting from an airplane, the plexiglass will prevent you from getting a clear photo. Open door helicopters are the way to go if you’re looking for a crystal clear view. However, crowded helicopters with other passengers blocking your view aren’t conducive to good photography. Our Robinson R44 helicopters are ideal for aerial photography, with huge windows and no middle seat or blocked views to find the best angles. We provide the option of open-door flights as well, so there’s nothing between you and your perfect shot!