When you’re living in the Balkans, when someone asks you what you’re doing for a living, the answer ‘aerial photographer’ isn’t a common answer. But, today we’re chatting with precisely one such drone pilot who is based in Skopje. His name is Teo Angelovski and he is a Macedonian drone pilot. He considers himself a young aerial photography and videography enthusiast. Moreover, he has made some serious waves in local media with his breath-taking aerial photos and videos from popular local landmarks and presenting them to the public from a fresh perspective – a bird’s-eye view. One example is the spine-chilling video of the empty streets of Skopje under lockdown due to the pandemic, which you can check out below.
In the following paragraphs, we’ll find out more about how drones are treated in this part of Europe, as well as, who he is and how he started, what his plans are, his opinions on the drone industry, some tips and tricks of the trade, and more.
TDW: Let’s kick this off with why you’re doing what you’re doing. What’s the most exciting part of being a drone pilot and flying a drone?
T.A.: For me, it’s the responsibility drone photographers have. While you’re flying the drone, you are responsible to follow all the rules and norms, to evade any accidents, and at the same time to get a proper photo with the right exposure or a flawless drone video without sudden or unnatural movements.
TDW: What about your beginnings? How did you become involved with drones considering that it’s a pretty new industry in the region?
T.A.: I had a great love for photography since I was a child. I loved taking photos with my DSLR camera and my GoPro. But when I found out about aerial photography, I wanted my photos to get a different and fresh perspective.
TDW: Usually drone pilots start with a more basic drone and then they’re looking for an upgrade. Was this the situation with you, too? Which drone are you using now?
T.A.: I use a DJI Phantom 4 Pro now. But, I didn’t start with that one. My first drone was a DJI Mavic Pro. As you said, basically, as bigger job opportunities opened up, I felt the need to have a better camera. That’s why I chose Phantom 4 Pro, which still has the best camera out of the other current “consumer” drones.
TDW: Interesting choices. What do you generally like to take photos of with your Phantom 4 Pro?
T.A.: Thanks. Generally, I like to take photographs of nature. Iceland is one of my favorite places where I’d like to take photos.
TDW: Let’s talk a bit about the country and region where you live. What are the challenges of being a Macedonian drone pilot?
T.A.: We have very beautiful landscapes in Macedonia. There are especially dramatic ones found on the young mountain ranges. I have sort of a challenge to shoot videos and take photos of all of them – of some of them even several times.
TDW: Do you think that that way drone pilots can help the further promotion of the country and its beauty?
T.A.: Yes, absolutely. This can be achieved as long as aerial photographers take photos, shoot videos, and, in general, fly their drones the right and legal way.
TDW: What is your opinion on the drone laws and regulations there?
T.A.: I have flown a drone in many countries, especially in Europe. Some of them are Sweden, Italy, Croatia, Albania, Serbia, Greece, and others. I believe that the regulations and laws regarding drones are similar in most of the European countries. However, I can say that together with the Croatian Agency, the Civil Aviation Agency in my country has one of the best systems for registering drone flights in the region, and maybe further.
TDW: The Balkan region has a new history with drones. Do you think that the people there have accepted drones and their usage?
T.A.: I think that when people hear the word ‘drone’, they immediately think of surveillance, tracking, recording. The true value of drones and how they can help multiple industries still aren’t recognized by many.
TDW: What are some of the tips or pieces of advice you’d like to share with fellow drone pilots and people who’re interested in starting with drone photography?
T.A.: To my fellow drone pilots, I wish you a safe and peaceful flight. And I want to tell those who want to take up aerial photography not to wait and start with one of the Mavic models.
I wanted my photos to get a different and fresh perspective.
TDW: What about some software for editing drone photographs and video footage?
T.A.: When it comes to videos captured by a drone, I use Adobe Premiere Pro for editing. For editing photos, I use Lightroom Classic plus Photoshop if it’s necessary.
TDW: Do you have some advice to share for acquiring skills for flying a drone in the country?
T.A.: Unfortunately, there is no drone school in our country yet where a Macedonian drone pilot can get the necessary skills. So, young people can get the skills they need to fly a drone online on the Internet.
TDW: To wrap things up, what are your plans when it comes to drone photography? And what does the future of the drone industry look like?
T.A.: All of it started as a hobby at first. But it grew into a profession. My long-term goal is to get myself a professional drone that I can use to enter the film industry. As for the global drone industry, from a photographer’s point of view, I expect DJI drones to get some serious competition. So, each year, manufacturers would release drones with better cameras and more long-lasting batteries. I still use a drone that was manufactured in 2016. And it still has the best camera currently on the market. Considering that, in my opinion, the last four to five years have been marked by small developments in this industry.
It’s always a pleasure to talk with talented young people like Teo, who aren’t afraid of trying new things and continue working on improving themselves – whether it’s aerial photography or something similar. The Drones World team thanks him for the time to provide answers to all of our questions.
If you know someone working with drones and has something interesting to tell the world, please contact us!