Drone photography in California.

Here you will find all the resources you need for Drone photography in California. Instead of searching all over the web for information concerning drones in the state of California, now you have this page with all the answers. This page will be updated as new information becomes available.

You can quick skip to the section you are most interested in by clicking on the link that pertains to the information you are looking for.

Drone Training
Drone Photography Services
Drone Groups/Clubs
Drone Regulations
Drone Jobs

Drone Training

This list is not exhaustive, but our team has researched the internet to bring you the most extensive list on the web for training/courses/schools in your state.

There are currently no universities offering UAV degrees, or dedicated drone schools in California but there still are some classes and training programs available.

If you are looking for a certification or degree, the nearest states would be Arizona, Oregon and Nevada.

Please note: Drone Photography Info has no financial interest in any of the institutions listed on these. We do not endorse any one of these institutions over another. Program descriptions  are usually taken from the websites of their respective organizations. We encourage you to do your own research and decide for yourself which of these UAV programs is right for you.

Unmanned Vehicle University

They offer a 3 phase UAV Pilot Training Program  For more info visit Unmanned Vehicle University

1 E Washington St Suite 500
Phoenix, AZ 85004
Phone: (602) 759-7372
Email: admissions@uxvuniversity.com


Professional instruction for those serious about a career or commercial UAV operations. For more info visit rotofx.com

Daily from 10:00 A.M. – 4:00 P.M.
Telephone: 818 462-3333
Email: info@rotorfx.com

Bravo Mike Aviation

Bravo Mike Aviation Logo

They offer a two day weekend course on commercial drones. For more info visit Bravo Mike Aviation

Email: barry@bravomikeaviation.com

If you know of any other training/classes/courses in California that would like us to consider adding to this list please submit to info@dronephotographyinfo.com


Drone Photography Services

This list is not exhaustive, but our team has researched the internet to bring you the top companies in their respective fields in drone photography and drone video in your state.

If you think we should consider another business in your state that does awesome work in this field please let us know here for consideration. info@dronephotographyinfo.com

Please note: Drone Photography Info has no financial interest in any of the business listed on these. We do not endorse any one of these businesses over another. Business descriptions  are usually taken from the websites of their respective businesses. We encourage you to do your own research and decide for yourself which of these businesses is right for you.

Aerial Affair

Aerial Affair is one of the premiere companies in Orange County, CA offering beautiful aerial photography/cinematography drone services at reasonable prices. For more visit Aerial Affair

Aerial Cinematography and Aerial Photography Drone services based in Los Angeles, CA. We specialize in Film, TV, Commercials, Real Estate, Sports, Events, Inspections, and much more. Insured. For more info visit Drone55


SkyCam Logo

California Aerial Photography – Los Angeles, San Francisco, San Diego and more. In this era of web videos and special effects, today’s audiences not only want surprising and stimulating visuals, they expect it. For more visit SkyCamUSA

Drone Dudes

DRONE DUDES is a Los Angeles based production collective founded by director Andrew H. Petersen and a passionate group of filmmakers, creatives, tech-heads, music-lovers, flying robots and a pup named Dutch.  Every system we design and flight we take is driven by our love of cutting-edge cinema, music and new adventures.  Our team is led by some of the most highly regarded pilots in the industry, bringing over a decade of experience in aerial cinematography and motion picture robotics. For more info visit DroneDudes

We are looking into providing a dedicated business directory page for all drone photography services in the state. If you would like to know when this becomes available so you can submit your business, please email us at info@dronephotographyinfo.com


Drone Groups & Clubs

This is a list of a south, central and northern based drone groups/clubs.

Please note: Drone Photography Info has no financial interest in any of the groups listed on these. We do not endorse any one of these groups over another. Group descriptions  are usually taken from the websites of their respective groups. We encourage you to do your own research and decide for yourself which of these groups is right for you.

L.A. & O.C. Drone Group

he Los Angeles and Orange County Drone User Group (LA/OC DUG) is an organization for amateur and professional drone users that seeks to promote the responsible use of flying robots for community service, artistic, entrepreneurial, and recreational purposes. For more info visit the group page

San Fransisco Drone Group
DroneGroup2-Drone Photography

SF Drones Start-up Meetup is part of the Drone User Group Network (DUGN), an association of community organizations dedicated to promoting the use of flying robots for community service, artistic, entrepreneurial, and recreational purposes. For more info visit the group page

Do you know of any other local drone groups/clubs in California please email us at info@dronephotographyinfo.com


Drone Regulations

FAA_Logo_Wide -Drone Photography

The FAA is the leading government agency setting the nation wide regulations for UAS/Drone use. Visit the regulations page on their official site for more information

Knowbeforeyoufly.org is the public site the FAA uses to inform the general public in an easy to understand manner. Below are the standard rules for the different type of uses.

  • Recreational Use
  • Business Use
  • Public Entities

Recreation Use

What is recreational use of sUAS?

 The recreational use of sUAS is the operation of an unmanned aircraft for personal interests and enjoyment. For example, using a sUAS to take photographs for your own personal use would be considered recreational; using the same device to take photographs or videos for compensation or sale to another individual would be considered a commercial operation. You should check with the FAA for further determination as to what constitutes commercial or other non-hobby, non-recreational sUAS operations.

What are the safety guidelines for sUAS recreational users?
  • Follow community-based safety guidelines, as developed by organizations such as the Academy of Model Aeronautics (AMA).
  • Fly no higher than 400 feet and remain below any surrounding obstacles when possible.
  • Keep your sUAS in eyesight at all times, and use an observer to assist if needed.
  • Remain well clear of and do not interfere with manned aircraft operations, and you must see and avoid other aircraft and obstacles at all times.
  • Do not intentionally fly over unprotected persons or moving vehicles, and remain at least 25 feet away from individuals and vulnerable property.
  • Contact the airport or control tower before flying within five miles of an airport.
  • Do not fly in adverse weather conditions such as in high winds or reduced visibility.
  • Do not fly under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
  • Ensure the operating environment is safe and that the operator is competent and proficient in the operation of the sUAS.
  • Do not fly near or over sensitive infrastructure or property such as power stations, water treatment facilities, correctional facilities, heavily traveled roadways, government facilities, etc.
  • Check and follow all local laws and ordinances before flying over private property.
  • Do not conduct surveillance or photograph persons in areas where there is an expectation of privacy without the individual’s permission (see AMA’s privacy policy).

Business Use

What is a commercial use of UAS?

Any commercial use in connection with a business, including:
  • Selling photos or videos taken from a UAS
  • Using UAS to provide contract services, such as industrial equipment or factory inspection
  • Using UAS to provide a professional services, such as security or telecommunications
What are some examples of commercial uses of UAS?
  • Professional real estate or wedding photography
  • Professional cinema photography for a film or television production
  • Providing contract services for mapping or land surveys

If you want to use UAS for a commercial purpose, you have a few options. You can apply for an exemption from the FAA to operate commercially. You can use UAS with an FAA airworthiness certificate and operate pursuant to FAA rules. In both cases you would also need an FAA Certificate of Authorization (COA). For more information about how to apply for an exemption, visit the FAA’s “Section 333″ page.

For more safety information, please download the Know Before You Fly brochure here.

Public Entities

Public entities, which include publically funded universities, law enforcement, fire departments and other government agencies, may currently apply for a Certificate of Waiver or Authorization (COA) from the FAA in order to use small unmanned aircraft systems (sUAS) in public aircraft operations.

Who can obtain a COA to operate public aircraft?
  • Only government entities—such as federal and state government agencies, law enforcement agencies and public colleges and universities—can receive a COA for public UAS aircraft operations.
  • Public aircraft operations must be conducted for a governmental function.
  • COAs are most commonly issued to public (government) entities, but are also required for civil (private) operations.
  • The FAA thoroughly evaluates each COA application to determine the safety of the proposal.
  • COAs are issued for a specific period of time, usually two years, and include special provisions unique to each proposal, such as a defined block of airspace and time of day sUAS can be used.
How can I apply for a COA?
  • Visit the FAA website for information on how to apply for a COA online.
  • A sample application can be viewed here.
  • Since 2009, the FAA has taken steps to streamline the application process by transitioning online.
  • The average COA processing time is less than 60 days.
  • Expedited authorization is available in emergency and life-threatening situations.


Drone Jobs

Drone Photography Drone Pilot
Photo by Brendon Thorne/Getty Images


Are you a trained drone pilot? Are you looking for a job/career in your state where you can use your drone skills. Below you will find an up-to-date listing of all the current jobs available in your state now. Job Board Coming Soon