Aerial cinematography can be used in a wide range of industries, from real estate to construction and thermal imaging. It offers clients and customers a completely different perspective and can achieve in hours what might otherwise take days.

While many parts of the United States are embracing drones, Washington, D.C. is still relatively strict about how videographers use its airspace. But that hasn’t stopped many of the nation’s most talented aerial cinematographers from calling the area “home” and securing FAA authorization to fly here.

Eric Kruszewski

An aerial black and white photo from a rodeo [Eric Kruszewski]

Based in Washington, D.C., Eric Kruszewski is an editorial and commercial videographer and drone pilot who has worked for National Geographic. His staggering aerial films focus on individuals and groups who have been marginalized by society, as well as unique subcultures that haven’t been recognized by the mainstream. He’s won numerous awards that include the Travel Photographer of the Year and has had his work featured in the “Washington Post” and on ABC and CNN.

New Media Systems

The sun rises over a snowy cityscape [New Media Systems]

Owned and operated by Richard MacDonald, New Media Systems is an aerial cinematography company that was established to serve the Mid-Atlantic region. Their tagline is: “Focused on the solution” and they have a proven track record of providing solutions to problems that seem impossible. Based in Richmond, Virginia, New Media Systems has more than 20 years of experience in aerial videography, architectural photography, and drone flying, as well as having helicopters and aircraft on hand to get the winning shot.

Zen Lense

An aerial real estate image by Zen Lense [Zen Lense]

Zen Lense specializes in creative real estate photography and videography in the Washington, D.C. area. They are highly skilled at creating 4K productions and real estate walk-through tours that showcase both the interior and exterior of properties, with bold colors and sharp images that can be optimized for marketing purposes. The Zen Lense team uses multiple lights and careful compositions to deliver outstanding results, whether it’s a drone video or a 360-degree aerial photograph.

Hover Solutions

An aerial cityscape image by Hover Solutions [Hover Solutions]

Founded in 2015 by Stuart and Nathanael Showalter, Hover Solutions offers aerial cinematography services throughout the Mid-Atlantic area. What began as a father and son learning to fly drones has transformed into a legal aerial imaging company. They’ve since shot countless hours of footage for the real estate industry and thermal imaging companies and are committed to offering the safest and most professional aerial services in the area. They are continually learning and developing their team’s skills through state-of-the-art robotic and software assets.

Capital Films DC

A man’s legs dangle high above the city [Capital Films DC]

Serving businesses and industries throughout Virginia, Maryland, and Washington, D.C., Capital Films DC is a full-service media production company. They offer videography and photography services for both commercial and wedding clients using the latest equipment the industry has to offer. They pride themselves on fostering close relationships with their clients and walking them through the entire process, from developing a storyline to capturing all of the special moments from their wedding day.

M2 Aerials

One of M2 Aerials’ commercial drone videos [M2 Aerials]

While based in New York, M2 Aerials also has offices in Washington, D.C. where they are licensed to shoot aerial productions. They are a fully insured, FAA-certified UAV company with a nighttime flying waiver for capturing after-dark still images and videos. M2 Aerials’ expert cinematography team has collaborated with nationally recognized TV stations and fashion brands, as well as working on scripted productions and broadcast sports. If you’re looking to train your broadcast team in drone videography, they can also be of assistance.

CPI Productions

An aerial cityscape shot by CPI Productions [CPI Productions]

Established in 1994 as Commercial Photographics, CPI Productions was created to bridge the gap between beautiful photography and dynamic video production. They had already established a reputation for their award-winning photography and wanted to supplement this with video storytelling. CPI Productions is all about showcasing properties and lifestyles through the use of cutting-edge aerial photography and videography. Not only do they use drones to achieve this, but also helicopters and aircraft, depending on the requirements.

VSI Aerial

A bird’s eye view of a construction site [VSI Aerial]

With over 15 years of experience in both civilian and military aviation, VSI Aerial is one of the most trusted aerial cinematography companies in the region. They are based in Northern Virginia but regularly shoot for clients in Washington, D.C. and Maryland. Whether they’re documenting construction sites, doing thermal imagery inspections, or capturing 360-degree photographs, their expertise is second to none. Their Elios drone is specifically designed for doing internal inspections and is able to complete tasks that would normally take days in just a few hours.

HD Bros

A sprawling ranch photographed by HD Bros [HD Bros]

Founded in Richmond, Virginia in 2012, HD Bros is a photography and videography company that works predominantly in the real estate industry. They capture stunning overhead shots of commercial and residential properties that can be used for online listings, helping them to stand out from the rest. HD Bros work throughout Virginia, Washington, D.C., Maryland, North Carolina, and Boston while adhering to all current drone laws. They offer a diverse range of packages based on the size and scale of your property.

Ryan Donnell

An aerial shot of a vineyard [Ryan Donnell]

With a degree in photojournalism from the University of Missouri, Ryan Donnell is now based in Washington, D.C. where he creates reportage-style images and videos for magazines, corporate clients, and advertising firms. He’s worked with publications such as “Entrepreneur”, “Fortune”, and “Midwest Living”, as well as Google, The Franklin Institute, and South Dakota Travel + Tourism. Ryan stretches the potential of drone videography outside of the real estate realm and proves it can enhance fashion editorials and street life shoots.

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