How to achieve cinematic drone footage

Drone footage has become very common on the internet; they have also become more affordable and easy to use in the last couple of years.

As a result, if you want your drone footage to impress your audience, then you have to push your efforts to the next level.

When you watch drone footage, the difference between someone who knows what they’re doing and someone who doesn’t is clear to see in seconds.

Cinematic drone footage is an art form; sometimes, an unorthodox technique can provide brilliant results.

Our team at Blue Whale Media has given their advice on how you can apply creativity and create your own cinematic drone footage.


The first thing on the list is to create a plan as drone footage forces us to be more sensitive with time. This also applies to any video shoot you undertake. The more you plan, the better the shoot will go and the more prepared you will be if any changes are needed during filming. Planning and variety go hand in hand because you are essentially building on your creativity and variety of the drone footage.

Jerky movement

It is imperative that jerky movements are avoided when filming with a drone. Try to make slow movements with the controls; this will help the stability. Also, try not to fly the drone around randomly, slow and precise is what you’re looking for. The idea is to take the viewer on a journey rather than having a spotlight on your acrobatic flying. Panning left and right can be tricky as quick movements will show stutter, this will not be cinematic.


Affordable drones are generally rather small; this means even the slightest of movement will sometimes be easy to see. 90% of drone footage needs some stabilisation, especially if you want to deliver smooth cinematic footage. With drones, the more speed, the more title the shot will become, this is even the case with a gimbal. In most cases, the alignment is unnoticeable, but if it does move, then the aesthetics of your drone footage could be affected.


You may notice that your drone footage doesn’t always have the epic feel you have envisaged. Chances are this is because of the speed of your drone. If you’re flying over objects on the ground or buildings, then the footage may not get the same cinematic feel because of the sheer speed. Try slower speeds because sometimes drone shots look like they are moving slower across a large object.

Motion blur

One of the limitations of affordable drones is hat they have a fixed aperture. You will need to use ridiculously fast shutter speeds to expose the image in most situations. Intern, this will eliminate almost all the natural motion blur, but motion blur is essential for creating cinematic footage, especially when the shot is quickly moving.

Drones are great because they offer a perspective that up until a few years ago, you would have had to use a helicopter to get cinematic drone footage.

With their growth and popularity, drones are being recognised for all kinds of footage in all industries. There is no end to how drones will be used in the future; from professional usage to recreational usage, your company could use a drone in many ways.