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Black and White Aerial Photography Tips

February 10, 2017

Aerial photography indeed offers a rare and beautiful perspective from above.  But black and white, or monochrome, effects can add a special touch to an aerial view.  When taking photos in black and white, there is versatility, a subtlety of tones, and diversity given to the images.  Anything could be captured using this effect, including landmarks, architecture, and bridges.  The subject of the photo tends to speak out even more when you are telling a story with the use of black and white imagery.  Shooting in black and white from an aerial position can give your pictures a completely different effect from those taken in color.

There are certain techniques that can be used to enhance black and white aerial photographs.  Listed here are some tips to use while on an NYC helicopter tour

  • Search for Lines, Shape, & Contrast. Look for various lines and shapes to capture.  For example, the architecture of buildings and bridges will more than likely stand out in monochrome photographs taken from the sky. To highlight these objects, it is also important to pursue tonal contrasts, the complimentary and opposing shades of black and white.
  • Find Shades of Gray. Without a wide array of tones, the photograph can look dull and lifeless.  By using the flash on your camera, highlights and shadows are cast over certain parts of the image.
  • Look for Patterns. Images of patterns, or repetitions, tend to pop out with aerial black and white photography because of the various tonal contrasts and shades of gray.
  • Capture the Experience. Take pictures of anything that speaks to your heart and don’t forget to capture the moments inside the helicopter as well.
  • Never Stop Shooting. Continue to snap away!  Oftentimes, your best photos are the ones that you didn’t plan to take.

By using these tips on your helicopter ride, you will undoubtedly capture monochrome photographs that will not only last a lifetime, but will tell the story of your tour of NYC from above.