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#Autumn# Awesome Spark Photos + Seven Tips to Get Prime Spark Photos
646 9 2018-11-1
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pianoplayer7
Second Officer
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Hello Forum! The DJI Spark is an awesome drone with tons of features for such a little drone. However, it can be quite difficult getting the perfect shots. For this contest entry, I am going to show you how to get amazing shots with the Spark - and in the meantime, show you some cool photos that I took from my house.

1: Don't Depend on Auto Exposure/White Balance. It is nearly impossible to get "the perfect shot" with the Spark unless you stop using auto exposure and auto white balance (AWB). The colors will either show up too light, too dark, or the wrong color. You can also give certain effects to certain photos as you wish. Here are some examples from using manual exposure and white balance:
DJI_0069.jpg DJI_0057.jpg DJI_0052.jpg
Now, this may seem daunting to you if you haven't studied the exposure triangle. Trust me - I was terrified of getting off auto mode. However, when I took the first step, I found out how easy it actually was and I was able to create much better photos and videos.

One other thing that helped me as I was aiming to get vibrant images was the PolarPro lens filter kit. I got the kit when I ordered the drone, and it really helps in many different settings. If the sun is too bright, but you don't want to put your shutter speed insanely high, the lens filters can help with that. If you want a more vibrant picture in a (seemingly) colorless area, the polarizers are perfect for that. And if you want lens protection while looking into the sun with your drone, using a filter may be the difference between a messed-up lens and one that still works.


2: Pay Attention to Exposure and White Balance. This goes along with the previous tip. Images don't always come out the way that they are expected. That's why it's important to get it right the first time. The next two pictures show examples of me having my white balance too low and getting two blue photos:
DJI_0048.jpg DJI_0087.jpg
The next picture shows me having both my shutter speed and white balance too high, therefore getting a dry-looking, yellow picture.
DJI_0088.jpg
The other pictures that you can find throughout this thread are examples of what to do. Sometimes pictures may look darker than usual, lighter than usual, or even colored differently than usual. That can give effect to the photo in certain circumstances and can give the feel of the setting.


3: Get Out at Golden Hour. The difference between golden hour and other times of day is... well, everything. "What is golden hour, and what's so special about it?" you ask. Golden hours are the times around sunrise and sunset, and those times are some of the best for getting epic photos and videos, even in more boring areas. One thing that is shocking about golden hour (specifically in the morning) is the way that you can get things that you wouldn't necessarily expect, along with the things you would expect. For example, in the picture below, I was shocked to see some cool-looking fog at the mountain near my house:
DJI_0070.JPG
But I was also able to capture the sun rising over the horizon, which I was expecting:
DJI_0076.jpg
Golden hour is one of the best times to get some cool shots, even in dull areas or with a drone as simple as the Spark. (If you want to know exactly when golden hours start and end each day, the PolarPro app is great for that. It also helps you know a lot of other factors for drone flying, including how your shutter speed should be set, and what lens filters you should use.)


4: Keep the Grid Lines On (Rule of Thirds). Any professional protographers (whether they fly drones or not) will tell you that the rule of thirds is key. In order to keep in line with this, keep the grid lines on in the app. Here is the key to the rule of thirds: keep your subject on the grid lines. If possible, put its center right on one of the points where the lines meet. The below picture shows an example where the tree was at one of the corners and my driveway was along one of the lines:
DJI_0085.jpg
Do you see it? If this picture had grid lines along it, then the tree would be at one of the perpendicular corners and the road would be on one of the vertical lines. It gives an eye-capturing and even unexpected perspective on photos - and drones take the rule of thirds to the next level. So don't ignore the grid lines!


5: Get Different Angles. If all you have to take a picture of is a cactus, get every angle of the cactus you can! Get up high and look down. Go out super far from the cactus. Get up really close (well, as close as the sensors allow you to). Get every angle that you can think of! The following two pictures are examples of two different angles of the same street: road.jpg
house.jpg

Don't those pictures give an interesting effect? They look very different from each other, but they really are the same. It's not the subject that makes a picture interesting. It's not the drone. It's you.


6: Don't Be Afraid to Take Pictures! You can always delete pictures - but you can't always get the chance to take that awesome picture back. When I was just learning to use my Spark, I didn't take many pictures because I was afraid that they wouldn't turn out right. The problem was that if I had taken more pictures, I would have gotten better shots! Now, some pictures simply won't turn out right. Some people may be afraid of that, like me. If you are, get yourself a 32 or 64 GB memory card and snap away! You will have plenty of space. And if, for some reason, a picture doesn't turn out right, think in two ways:

1) How can I change this picture to make it look better? (i.e. photo editing)
2) Could I ever use this picture for anything?

If your photo does not fit in either category, just delete it. It's that simple. If you can edit it, do it! In the photo below, I took one of those junky shots with a building - smack! - right where I didn't want it. But, after that, I cropped out the factory, and the picture following shows what even just a simple edit can do for your "junk" photo:
DJI_0081.jpg

Turned into:
DJI_0081 (cropped).JPG
I didn't use Photoshop, Lightroom, or any other advanced photo editing software. All I used was just the simple photo editing software that came with my computer. One easy change can make the difference.
7: Practice! None of the captain-ranking members; none of the people whose videos made it on the digest; none of the professionals; no one at the top made it by just reading a ton of threads on how to get the best pictures, while letting their drone collect dust. Thread posts are useful - I have learned a lot from them - however, you need to get out and try it yourself. Look around and work hard at stick controls, video/photo taking, and post processing. Knowing these skills will take you places you never would have expected before!
DJI_0075.jpg

Have a great flight!

DJI_0092.jpg
2018-11-1
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Nebuchadnezzar
Captain
Flight distance : 1778514 ft
Spain
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Amazing shots !!
2018-11-5
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pianoplayer7
Second Officer
Flight distance : 244239 ft
United States
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Any tips would be greatly appreciated
2018-11-7
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A CW
Captain
Flight distance : 11526437 ft
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United Kingdom
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Great shots  
2018-11-8
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pianoplayer7
Second Officer
Flight distance : 244239 ft
United States
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Thank you!
2018-11-8
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pianoplayer7
Second Officer
Flight distance : 244239 ft
United States
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Thank you!
2018-11-8
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A CW
Captain
Flight distance : 11526437 ft
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United Kingdom
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You're welcome  
2018-11-8
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jacksonnai
Captain
Malaysia
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Great shots
2018-11-25
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pianoplayer7
Second Officer
Flight distance : 244239 ft
United States
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jacksonnai Posted at 11-25 01:07
Great shots

Thank you!
2018-11-25
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jacksonnai
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Malaysia
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You're welcome
2018-11-27
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