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Filmmaker shares stunning drone photo of Vancouver city

Vancouver arguably looks great at any angle it’s photographed, but the city looks particularly stunning in this image taken via drone by Jon Ross.

Vancouver arguably looks great at any angle it’s photographed, but the city looks particularly stunning in this image.

Taken via drone, about 300ft in the air, from the south side of False Creek, it’s a point of view very few get to see of the city.

Jon Ross and colleague Jacob Crawford, from Jon Ross Films, had just finished shooting an opening sequence for the NHL draft in early July, when they noticed the stunning sunset occurring and had to send the drone up to capture the moment.

“The sun was setting and it looked gorgeous so we thought we’d see what some photos looked like,” Ross, who has been flying drones for the past nine years, said.

The striking panorama is eight 24mp photos stitched together. It was snapped using an X7 camera and long exposure setting.

"Each photo was a long exposure (about 3 second shutter) which meant shooting each of the eight photos multiple times until we got a sharp image," Ross explained. "It always amazes me that the drone is able to keep the camera steady enough for a long exposure to be sharp, this is difficult even when using a tripod on the ground..."

Ross told Vancouver is Awesome he’d flown model aircrafts most of his life and ventured into drone photography and film-making because of the creative freedom it offered.

“I love being able to put the camera wherever I want, to get the angle I want,” he explained.

“A lot of times it’s tricky if you’re stuck on the ground, you can’t quite get the angle you’re looking for. But with the drone, and all the vertical space to move around, you can position yourself however looks best.

“You’re not limited. You’re seeing things from a different perspective.”

Referring to his latest city snap, Ross said there was no way to see Vancouver from that vantage point, without a drone.

“It’s too low for helicopters and airplanes. So you get these unique angles, which is refreshing,” he said.

While you may think, ‘anyone can do this’ it does take quite a bit of experience – plus, there’s a few hoops you have to jump through first if you want to create magical photos with a drone.

“In order to get a shot like that you have to have your drone license and all your permissions in place with Transport Canada and NAV Canada to fly over the water,” Ross said. “You also have to have a dock secured [in this instance]. We had private property to fly from.”

Ross, who has been working with camera drones professionally the past five years, said it was crucial to follow the rules.

“The rules have been there for quite a while now, they changed in June but not much for commercial operators,” he said.

“Vancouver is a tricky one because it is controlled airspace and there is a lot of air traffic with the hospital, but once you have it all figured out it’s not too bad.”

While there are a few hurdles to jump, Ross said it was more than worthwhile.

“I encourage everyone to get out there and give it a go – it’s a lot of fun,” he said.

You can find a full list of drone regulations and rules here.

Follow Ross’s film adventures on Instagram @jon_ross_films.