Photography For Real Estate

Tips and techniques for real estate photography

Real Estate Photos from a Helicam

Posted by larrylohrman on April 22, 2006


Have you ever had difficulties getting a great front shot for a real estate photo? I have that problem all the time. I keep wishing I had a “jetpack” that would let me hover 50 to 100 feet off the ground so I can get good angles to shoot from. The best I’ve done is stand on the top of my truck.

There’s another way. Hire a photographer that has a Helicam. That’s a radio controlled helicopter with a camera mounted on the bottom. The above photo is by Tabb Firchau of www.nwaerialphotography.com . Tabb has a electric helicopter with a Canon EOS 5D mounted on the bottom and for around $350 he will get the best possible exterior angle for you. Tabb also shots video, panoramas and spherical panoramas with his Helicam.

It turns out there are many aerial photographers around the world that use low altitude remote controlled aircraft to shoot stills and video. A directory of photographers that provide this service is at: www.helicam.org.

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8 Responses to “Real Estate Photos from a Helicam”

  1. I’m cheap 🙂 First thing I though, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kite_aerial_photography

  2. Larry said

    Yes, I’m cheap too. Tabb says his German made electric RC helicopter costs $5,000 and he has about $10,000 of supporting gear. And many of these guys that do this professionally carry insurance in the order of $1,000,000 to protect against the risk they crash their bird in to someones house etc. That’s why hiring a professional for $350 to get a series of shots with a helicam for a high-end listing is a bargin.

  3. Microsoft maps, http://local.live.com have a stunning bird’s eye views mode for big US cities and some of UK; goto with help > bird’s eye map views.

    I’ve got some examples in my personal blog, http://marc.lacoste.free.fr/blog/?p=63

    via http://www.techcrunch.com/2006/05/23/new-features-at-livecom-local-maps/trackback/

    sightseeing at http://www.birdseyetourist.com/

    I haven’t read terms of use.

  4. In the same spirit, with a little baloon, 120€ (approx 150USD):
    http://www.balloide-photo.com/ENGLISH/

  5. Jim Franklin said

    There’s a guy here that has a heli-cam. AeroSouth is his company. He has done some interesting stuff. Lot cheaper to hire than to build your own.

    In a previous job I worked, my company had a 25 ft pnuematic mast with a Canon 1DS mounted on it in our van. Gives a whole new perspective to a piece of real estate but you really have to watch your location.

  6. […] by larrylohrman on December 1, 2007 Back in the spring of 2006 I did a post on the Aerial photography work that Tabb Firchau does. I also did a post on one of his first 360VR […]

  7. […] Back in the spring of 2006 I did a post on the Aerial photography work that Tabb Firchau does. I also did a post on one of his first 360VR […]

  8. […] in the spring of 2006 I did a post on the Aerial photography work that Tabb Firchau does. I also did a post on one of the first 360VR […]

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