Heavylift Drone Filming

A dynamic perspective on low altitude photography

Flying Pictures is one of only a handful of companies in the UK to hold an OSC operating permission from the CAA meaning we can fly both heavy and light lift drones as close as 10m from public, buildings and vehicles that are not under our direct control. This opens up a world of opportunities for city centre aerial filming and makes productions life easier requiring few lock off, fewer marshals and fewer permissions ultimately saving time and money. As such, we have extensive experience filming in central London and restricted areas including military bases, airports, diplomatic homes and even Royal Palaces.

Our highly skilled pilots and experienced Aerial DOP's and Camera Operators have credits spanning major feature films, commercials, drama & documentaries, worldwide. Each of our pilots has many years' experience flying remotely piloted aircraft and are fully qualified and independently assessed on a regular basis, they are highly experienced working on-set and have credits to match.

Our operations team are veterans in customer care and success with years of experience dealing with complex drone filming projects all over the world. Issy and her team are best placed to help answer your questions, provide quotations and update paperwork meaning you can keep your production on track and moving forward with as little hassle as possible.

"Our aim is to make productions life easier, every step of the process."


From Cinema-ready heavylift drones, carrying cameras such as our own Arri Alexa Mini, REDs or Sonys, to smaller lightweight packages we have a solution for every environment & budget. Here's some of our key equipment used for our every day filming around the world.

Freefly Alta X Heavylift Aircraft

Our main workhorse is the Freefly Alta X heavylift drone which will fly up to a maximum weight of 35kg and a usable payload of around 16kg. This gives us the option of flying the fantastic DJI Ronin 2 gimbal system which has an impressive payload capability and allows us to fly a wide variety of different cameras. Popular options include the Sony Venice 1 and 2, Alexa Mini LF or RED DSMC2 camera bodies with a variety of different glass.

Key stats:
Max take off weight: 34.9kg
Max usable payload: 16kg
Light flight time: 26 minutes
Heavy flight time: 12 minutes
Minimum separation from public: 20m

Freefly Alta 8 Heavylift Aircraft

Equally important to our heavylift drone filming range is the Freefly Alta 8. This exceptionally relable aircraft has been working on sets across the world since it's launch back in 2016 providing highly accurate and safe aerials every time. This 8 rotor drone gives great redundancy and an extra element of precise control for the pilot given it's extra control surfaces over the Alta X. This comes at a cost to flight time, however, if accurate positioning is the key priority this aircraft performs every time.

Key stats:
Max take off weight: 18.1kg
Max usable payload: 8.6kg
Light flight time: 14 minutes
Heavy flight time: 7 minutes
Minimum separation from public: 10m

Flying Pictures Raven X8 Heavylift Aircraft

The Flying Pictures Raven X8 heavylift drones have been a staple of our inventory for many years. Originally developed with maximum safety in mind, these aircraft work faultlessly accross highly RF congested areas with system redundancy first and foremost. With dual flight controllers, ballistic parachute systems, motor, esc and TX redundancy, operating heavylift drones down't get any safer than this.

Key stats:
Max take off weight: 22kg
Max usable payload: 9.4kg
Light flight time: 14 minutes
Heavy flight time: 7 minutes
Minimum separation from public: 10m