Andrew started Sky View back in 2014 after participating in several home sales and realising he was in the perfect position to offer something that the assigned photographers he'd encountered had all put in the too hard basket.
As a licensed and current commercial airline pilot with over 3000 hours logged, he originally comes from a background in large scale aerial photography having flown twin engine fixed wing survey aircraft and high end Unmanned Aerial Vehicles whilst building his flying experience. He also enjoys radio control scale model flying as a hobby on the side and initially developed his skills with foam and plastic model aeroplanes at the local park.
Photography has always been Andrew's other passion, with several of his DSLR and drone shot landscapes published in books, front pages of newspapers and featuring on national television. Forming the Sky View Photography team has allowed him to combine his aviation expertise, RC knowledge and passion for picture taking to deliver what we believe is a superior product to the markets we serve. This has lead to the company winning the APAC New Zealand Business Award for 'Best Aerial Photography & Videography Company 2018', and more recently, 'Drone Operator of the Year' at the APAC Business Awards 2020.
PLATFORMS & CAMERAS
DJI Inspire 1 Pro [4K video, 16MP stills]
We primarily use a DJI Inspire 1 quadcopter, fitted with a Micro Four Thirds Zenmuse X5 camera. The X5 is the world’s first mirrorless, compact MFT camera specifically designed for aerial photography and cinematography, with a powerful sensor about 8 times the size of other consumer level drone’s on the market.
Using a 30mm lens with a 72⁰ field of view, the X5 is fitted to an integrated gyro stabilised gimbal system allowing it to be independently panned through 360⁰ of rotation as well as tilted vertically in flight. It produces greater clarity, lower noise imagery than most other drones thanks to its much higher resolution sensor that provides 12.8 stops of dynamic range.
This craft itself features a carbon fibre frame, with a control range of 5 km, a top speed of over 80 km/h and can be operated by either one or two crew depending on the complexity of the shoot.
Not only can the pilot view a live stream from the on board camera during flight to optimise each frame before shooting, but the versatility of the drone's movements allows for complete control in all three axis' of movement.
DJI P4P v2.0 [4K video, 20MP stills]
We also use a smaller less invasive looking DJI Phantom 4 Pro quadcopter, widely considered to be the leader in its class. It boasts another advanced gimbal stabilization system, a mechanical camera shutter and can remain airborne for up to 30 minutes per battery.
The P4P v2.0 features an impressive 7 km control range and a variety of pre programmable waypoint and orbital navigation functions, along with dual ultrasonic sensors to allow for flight in environments lacking GPS reception.
This drone is our go to machine for mapping projects, with capability to fly in pre programmable grid patterns for large scale data gathering missions.
Both the Inspire and the P4P utilise GPS ground station guidance to increase positioning accuracy and come equipped with the autopilot flight modes as well as traditional manual flight control modes.
DJI Mavic Air 2 [4K video, 48MP stills]
Our latest acquisition is the 2020 DJI Mavic Air 2. It's small enough to be launched by hand, yet features a powerful wide angle camera and mechanically stabalised 3 axis gimbal on par with our bigger craft.
The Mavic also features ultrasonic positioning sensors that allow for indoor flight and is the perfect tool for use in congested spaces or hard to reach environments where carrying in a full gear case isn't a practical option.
We use neutral density filters on the Mavic's camera lens, just as we do with the Inspire and P4P to ensure consistency with our imagery. Having the flexibility to use multiple drones per shoot gives us a dynamic advantage when it comes to meeting our client's briefs!
DJI OSMO PRO [4K video, 16MP stills]
To compliment the drones, we also have a DJI OSMO PRO steadycam that uses our wide angle Zemuse X5 camera mounted on to a hand held grip for ground level 4K videography and photography.
The unit comes with the same three axis gimbal system as the drone, allowing for butter smooth horizontal and vertical panning, and can be controlled wirelessly to capture full 360 degree panoramas as well as static and motion time lapses when mounted to our tripod.
Utilising the OMSO creates continuity of video capture between camera platforms, with the uniform stabilisation technology allowing for seamless integration with our aerial work on projects that require filming both indoors and outdoors, or in areas not suitable for drone flight.
WHAT MAKES US DIFFERENT?
WE FLY DRONES WHERE OTHERS CAN'T!
Sky View Photography fly our equipment in accordance with subpart A and E of the Part 101 Rule set out by the Civil Aviation Authority of New Zealand, whom we regally liaise with.
Large areas of Manukau City, Waitakere City and the North Shore are categorised as controlled airspace by Airways NZ and require authorisation from Air Traffic Control to legally operate any form of remotely controlled aerial vehicle inside of.
Drone operations within a 4 km radius of any registered airport or helipad also require a valid pilot's qualification and permission to be granted from the airport management before commencing flight.
Sky View Photography holds the competitive edge over other drone
photographers thanks to our crew holding recognised full Commercial
Pilots License qualifications, our pre-existing relationships with airport
management and competent use of the Airshare™ flight planning system.
To understand how much of the region this CAA rule excludes, it means no unshielded flying without such license can be legally permitted within 4 kilometres of Parakai Airfield, Dairy Flat Airfield, Whenuapai Air Base, Auckland Harbour Waterdrome, Mechanics Bay Heliport, Pikes Point Heliport, Auckland International Airport, Waiheke Airfield, Ardmore Airport as well as the helipads at North Shore Hospital and Auckland Hospital.
✔ NZ CAA CPL - Commercial Pilots Licence
✔ NZ CAA Remotely Piloted Aircraft Pilot Certificate
✔ NZ CAA Part 141 RPAS Examiner
✔ FRTO - Flight Radio Telephony Operators Licence
✔ Advanced Diploma in Professional Photography
✔ 10+ years commercial aviation experience
"Having used Sky View Photography to take aerial shots of two residential properties that we were selling I can thoroughly endorse them as a professional operation. On both occasions, one at very short notice, they provided an excellent service which was undoubtedly a factor in the successful marketing of the properties.
For anyone doubting the value of aerial photography using UAV (Drone) platforms rest assured there are huge dividends in providing potential buyers with unmatchable images showing site and perspective...or just a damn fine photo to hang on the wall!"
Manukau Beautification Charitable Trust
"It is my pleasure as CEO of the Manukau Beautification Charitable Trust, a CCO of Auckland Council, to write a commendation of Sky View Photography.
Recently we had need for aerial videography and a topographical survey of a location in South Auckland where we intend to develop an Environmental Education Centre. One critical factor was that the work had to be undertaken in a controlled air space, and this required an experienced operator who was accredited and familiar with the regulations and permission process.
Sky View Photography provided a service that was cost effective, experienced and exceedingly efficient. Communication with our Company during the assignment was precise and Andrew’s ability to explain in simple terms what was being undertaken and why, made us very confident of his skill.
I make no hesitation in recommending Andrew and Sky View Photography as a company that I would turn to first as future needs require."
"Was in urgent need for some footage to be taken and after googling drone photography came across Sky View Photography. Their website was inviting, easy to read and gave 3 pricing structures which no other website offered.
After making contact late on a Tuesday evening via email, return contact was made early the next day and photography work was carried out on the Thursday morning.
Sky View Photography were efficient, fast and very professional to deal with. This Company comes highly recommended and we will definitely be seeking their professional work again."
Property Managers Group
"We were referred to Sky View Photography, via a recommendation.
Andrew from the very beginning was professional, dedicated, and knowledgeable; particularly in regards to drone photography and the legalities surrounding this type of photography.
They successfully managed the assignment with a positive attitude, on time and on budget. We would not hesitate to recommend Sky View to anyone requiring a professional photographer."
"It was such an awesome experience having you at our wedding!
You organised and captured amazing photos of us with our guests and our venue. Will definitely be recommending you to everyone!"
"We needed a professionally shot aerial video to showcase our 72 lot subdivision in Martinborough. Having been recommended we engaged Sky View who arranged everything with ease.
We are extremely impressed with the service and blown away by the outstanding product delivered! Thank you and we look forward to using you again soon."