Infographic: Always Keep These 8 Things in Mind Before Taking Flight with Your Drone

Our friends at Story & Heart are on a roll with the helpful infographics lately. First it was a simple method that you can use to determine whether or not you're going to trip the breaker with too many lights. Now the S&H crew have delivered another one sure to help out the new generation of aerial filmmakers. Matt Brue, founder of Capture Film Co. and one of the many talented educators at the Academy of Storytellers, put together this fantastic checklist of 8 things that you should always consider before your drone leaves the ground. Check it out:

Story & Heart Drone Infographic

For those of you who are more experienced with aerial filmmaking, what tips would you give to someone who's just getting started with drones? Let us know down in the comments!     

Your Comment


And always turn on your GOPRO before you turn on your drone/gimbal

July 19, 2015 at 3:19AM

Serhan Meewisse

I do it the other way, but yeah it's important to turn both on :)

July 19, 2015 at 6:25PM, Edited July 19, 6:25PM


Please, please, please convince your location managers that you are a skilled pilot and no harm will be done to the location. They are having quite a few heart attacks during the flight.

July 19, 2015 at 8:32AM

Mert Gurel
Line Producer

In the UK you have CAA regulation. From

Summary of UK legal requirements

This is a summary of the legal situation in as plain English as we can do! Please refer to the air navigation order on the CAA site for specific details.

The operation of the aircraft must not endanger anyone or anything.

The aircraft must be kept within the visual line of sight (normally taken to be within 500 m horizontally and 400 ft vertically) of its remote pilot (i.e. the ‘person in charge’ of it). Operations beyond these distances must be approved by the CAA (the basic premise being for the operator to prove that he/she can do this safely).

Small unmanned aircraft (irrespective of their mass) that are being used for surveillance purposes are subject to tighter restrictions with regard to the minimum distances that you can fly near people or properties that are not under your control. If you wish to fly within these minima, permission is required from the CAA before operations are commenced.

CAA permission is also required for all flights that are being conducted for aerial work (i.e. in very simple terms, you are getting paid for doing it).

The 'remote pilot' has the responsibility for satisfying him/herself that the flight can be conducted safely.

The aircraft must not be flown:

over or within 150 metres of any congested area
over or within 150 metres of an organised open-air assembly of more than 1,000 persons;
within 50 metres of any vessel, vehicle or structure which is not under the control of the person in charge of the aircraft
within 50 metres of any person except during take-off or landing, the aircraft must not be flown within 30 metres of any person except for the person in charge of the aircraft.

Details of UK restricted airspace can be found at

Careful note should be taken that the collection of images of identifiable individuals, even inadvertently, when using surveillance cameras mounted on a small unmanned surveillance aircraft, will be subject to the Data Protection Act. As this Act contains requirements concerning the collection, storage and use of such images, Small Unmanned Aircraft operators should ensure that they are complying with any such applicable requirements or exemptions. Further information about the Data Protection Act and the circumstances in which it applies can be obtained from the Information Commissioner’s Office and website:

July 19, 2015 at 10:51AM, Edited July 19, 10:51AM

Julian Richards
Film Warlord

Thanks for sharing this Julian!

July 20, 2015 at 10:53AM

Justin DeMers
Story & Heart Co-Founder

Very nice list! I love it!

July 22, 2015 at 5:43AM


Very true , but the most importan is that you always need a co-pilot.

July 23, 2015 at 9:41AM

Mauricio Camargo
Director of Photography / Filmmaker

1. Know how to really fly copters, not just guide them using GPS, and hope you can get it back by using the "return to home feature".
2. Have one or two complete spare copter rigs with all the parts. It sucks going back home with nothing.
3. Re read suggestion #1.

July 30, 2015 at 4:04PM

Anthony Wade
Old Guy Student