Tips to Improve your Aerial Cinematography.
1. Keep Your Lens and Filters Clean.
This one seems obvious but it is important. I check my lens and filter before each flight
2. Time of Day.
The best time to capture epic footage is to film an hour after sunrise or an hour before sunset, during these times the light is less harsh and will yield stunning videos.
3. Using Filters.
Neutral density filters are used to reduce your cameras shutter speed. A general rule in cinematography is to have your shutter speed at double your frame rate. For example, when shooting at 30fps you want shutter at 1/60th which will yield a smooth cinematic look. This rule of cinematography is also called the "180 degree rule of shutter" for those of you who would like to read up on it. At PolarPro we manufacture a wide range of Mavic Filters that will help you achieve slower shutter speeds.
PolarPro | DJI Mavic Filters.
4. How to Select the Right Filter.
The goal you are trying to achieve with video is double your frame rate. If you are not familiar with f-stops and exposure, fear not, we have developed a free app that calculates all this for you:
- IOS: Filter Calculator on the App Store
- Andriod: Filter Calculator - Android Apps on Google Play
5. When Possible Shoot Away from the Sun.
Shooting at the sun can be very tricky and often lead to severely under-exposed or over-exposed images and video. If I am shooting a subject, I always try to move the aircraft into a spot where the sun is behind the camera.
6. Smooth Gimbal Movements.
Flying the Mavic in sport mode is really fun, it's hard not to fly it like a fighter jet. However, if you are trying to create a cinematic composition, you need to slow it down. Try to move the gimbal smoothly and pan slowly, the slower the movements the better (you can always speed it up in post).
7. Manual vs Auto Mode.
A common question we get is which mode to shoot in with our filters. The answer: whatever mode you are most comfortable with. Manual mode will lock your shutter speed which is perfect when you want it to be EXACTLY double frame rate. The drawback is that if exposure changes in the air you will need to use the EV comp to balance it, or else correct it in post. Have no idea what any of that means? Shoot in Auto, when you shoot in Auto the processor will keep your shutter speed CLOSE to double shutter, and you will not need to make any changes in post.
Jeff from PolarPro.