When people find out I’m an aerial photographer, their reaction is usually a “wow, cool” or a general “huh?” So let me explain a little… Aerial photographers hang out of helicopters and airplanes and take pictures. There are all sorts of reasons and places and ways to do this, but I will tell you how and why it works for me. If you have ever considered flying to be “fun,” or if the idea of the wind in your face while you work excites you, then read on. Heck, even if you just like roller-coasters, this could work for you. This type of work fits me in a way that nothing else did. I love freedom from routine, I never stop moving, and exploration of places and things from all angles is what drives the most fundamental part of my personality. The practical side of me also understands that you need money to eat, so I’ve learned some things along the way that allow me to do work that I find meaningful, travel to places I once only imagined, and make a nice living. The thing that most people find surprising (if I tell them) is that it’s not that complicated. Like I said before, I don’t have a formal background in photography, and I started the business of making money in this field with a card table and one client. It was always my desire to grow the business and expand my services and geographical reach. But aerial photography can be a solo venture, where you line up your resources (airplane or helicopter rentals and equipment) and maximize your time in the sky. It’s that simple. The best way to describe the joy and diversity of aerial photography is to take a look at some of the photography that sells itself over and over. Here are a few of my best sellers: Some of these images are for big clients (the kind that you earn with hard work and perseverance), but some of the things that sell are just plain fun to shoot or are unique destinations or vistas that can only be captured from the air. The platform of aerial photography has also earned me entrance into places on the ground where I’m able to secure award-winning and saleable images. Allowing yourself the unique vista that altitude can provide has the power to transform all of the photographs you take. The secret to success in photography (for me) is to never stop looking, experiencing, and focusing on undiscovered vantage points. When I’m engaged this way, I also find romance and novelty in the things I thought I knew – the ground-level view of walking through the life I have created. Images that sell are ones that tell stories, explore beauty, and shift perspective. In teaching myself how to work in the sky, I have found the place that marries my photography talents with my desire to live wholeheartedly and sell to a diversified and plentiful buying audience. [Editor’s Note: Learn more about how you can turn your pictures into cash in our free online newsletter The Right Way to Travel. Sign up here today and we’ll send you a new report, Selling Photos for Cash: A Quick-Start Guide, completely FREE.]
Want to Photograph Airplanes, Helicopters, and Roller-coasters?
by Colette Eddy | Mar 5, 2011