How to get the same picture framed, multiple times, over several months?

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I have been tasked to take 5 progress pictures of a construction project from the exact same location, elevation, and gimbal pitch with the P4PV2. The object is to show the site before construction, three shots during, and then after construction. These photographs will be proudly displayed in the contractor's office. I would like to be as precise as possible to get the same picture "frame" over several months. I have an idea of where I want to take the shot from, but I will not know any of the location information until I actually fly and frame the shot that I want. I would like some advice, from someone who has done this before, on how to get the same picture framed multiple times, over several months.
 

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Make a jig of sorts,or paint some location Mark's on a object so you get the same shot over and over or use time lapse ,use the grid lines in your cam settings to line up your picture
 

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I have been tasked to take 5 progress pictures of a construction project from the exact same location, elevation, and gimbal pitch with the P4PV2.
I have done this on a large development site over two years.
GPS cannot position the drone exactly every time and will only be accurate to within a few metres.
But that's not critical with the very wideangle lens on the drone.
If you can have access to the photo point on the ground, that helps make things easy.
Just launch from the desired spot, climb to the desired altitude, line up your shot, .using the grid lines on your screen and shoot.

Altitude will be fairly accurate but even if it's a few metres out, it's hard to spot any difference.

If you cannot launch from the photo point, you could use Litchi to fly to a programmed location/s and then manually shoot the images as above.
 
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This is an interesting question. Hopefully someone with experience of the same problem can help. However, if attempting this myself, I would use visual reference points - at least three, relatively close to the drone (if possible) and spaced as far apart (in your frame) as possible. Naturally, these would need to remain a constant throughout the shoot. e.g. a tree that gets chopped down won't be much help as a reference point. On subsequent shoots I would put the drone up in the general position and then use a photograph from the earlier shoot to line up the reference points. I would use the screen grid-lines (as ianzone mentioned above) to help with the lining up and reproduce those lines on the photograph that I'm trying to match with. Use the screen markers to achieve the same camera pitch angle each time. I would also be hoping to replicate the lighting conditions on each shoot.
To help get your drone into the approximate position on subsequent shoots, being able to launch from directly below your photo location would obviously be of benefit - provided you can go back to that same spot each time. Then you would just take it straight up to the same elevation as your initial photo and fine-tune from there. If unable to launch from directly below your photo location, still try to launch from the same spot and fly out the same distance on the same bearing (use a visual reference point or compass).
Lastly, if you can afford the time, spread your risk by taking shots from more than one location.
 
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The first thought I had was using Litchi...yet this doesnt seem to be the first suggestion. Clearly there's more for me to learn. Why wouldnt Litchi work? Seems one waypoint, setting the altitude, shoot and repeat makes the most sense...
 
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The first thought I had was using Litchi...yet this doesnt seem to be the first suggestion. Clearly there's more for me to learn. Why wouldnt Litchi work? Seems one waypoint, setting the altitude, shoot and repeat makes the most sense...
It might be worth a try, but I suspect you wouldn't get the level of repeat accuracy required. It would at least get you to the approximate location (in space) from which you could manually fine-tune the shot.
 
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It might be worth a try, but I suspect you wouldn't get the level of repeat accuracy required. It would at least get you to the approximate location (in space) from which you could manually fine-tune the shot.
That's the way.... Set the camera to RAW and use photoshop to fine tune.
 
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I assume the OP is trying to repeat an oblique photo and not just one straight down. I would use Litchi and set up a number of waypoints to take a photo from each location for a set of photos. Repeating that mission will result in similarly captured photos on different dates. Personally, I would set up the shots so that I'd have a little wiggle room to crop the photos exactly the same using Photoshop, just in case the photos taken on different dates are slightly off due to wind conditions. If only one photo is desired, then keep the preferred waypoint and delete all other photo waypoints from the mission.
 
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In addition to all the other good ideas, if you're using an Apple device you could screen shot the first image from GO 4 and jump back and forth between the photo and GO 4 to line up the shot on subsequent flights. I'm not sure if there will be any issues with minimizing GO 4 while you check the photo. I'm sure others will chime in with their experience.
 
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The base accuracy of the DJI gps positioning will limit any waypoint repeatability. The best approach would be to do the best you can with that, and post process with Photoshop or Afinity Photo. Both will allow you to create stacks of images and perform alignment in x,y and rotation. They work pretty well.

Another issue that will probably be troubling is the lighting from day to day. Shoot at the same time every day, and try for the same cloud cover - good luck with that.
 

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I think MapMaker got it. Shoot a bit wider than you want for the final print and crop all the same. Spot on accuracy for location and view is not critical. Just get pretty close, within a reasonable tolerance The print viewer's eye and mind will tell him that the view is the same. It's not mapping, it's photography. Illusion is more powerful than reality.
 
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If I was to do this I would use Litchi. I would program the position for the photograph as the 1st waypoint, have 2nd and 3rd waypoints in a triangle at least 20 feet apart. I would have the drone take an image at WP1, fly to the other two WPs and then return to WP1 and snap another photo. Next I would run the mission a 2nd and 3rd time. That would give me 6 images on the first day. Repeat this mission on each of the next 4 days. Now I'd have 6 images taken on each day. At the end of the 5th day, compare the images from each day and use the ones that are closest for the end result. Extra work but it may give you the five shots needed for the project without extra post processing. Just make sure you save the Litchi mission and use it each of the five days. I would also watch weather reports so I get images under similar lighting conditions and at as close to the same time of day as possible. That is unless some variety is the order of the day.
 
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1. take & print photo #1
2a. later, whilst looking at #1, take #2 a few times, then land
2b. repeat (2a) again
2c. repeat (2a) again
3. print 2a, 2b, 2c, compare to 1, keep best
4a. later, whilst looking at #1 & best #2, take #3 a few times, then land
4b. repeat (4a) again
4c. repeat (4a) again
(are you getting the idea now...?)
 
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A few posts recommend using Litchi, I agree.
What they don't mention is that you have to place your drone at the exact same position (height wise) every time you start the waypoint mission because the programmed height for each waypoint is relative to the take off position (height).
Also:
In mission setting use "Straight Lines" for Path Mode.
At each waypoint program the following Actions:
-Stay for 5 seconds
-Take Photo
-Stay for 5 seconds

To align the drone/camera/gimbal you can either set a Point of Interest (POI)
or
Fly manual in Waypoint Mode the first time, hover at a desired point, align the camera, then press the C1-button on your Remote controller. This places a waypoint at the aircraft position complete with 3d space location, horizontal camera/drone orientation and vertical gimbal/camera angle.
Repeat for different waypoints.
You now have created a waypoint mission, don't forget to give it a name and save it !
Now you can edit this mission and add the waypoint actions.
 
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I've done seveal jobs like that using LItchi and WP missions. The only thing I can add to the above is to use a little transition blur when you go from one image to the next and you'll have a nice product.
 
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I have been tasked to take 5 progress pictures of a construction project from the exact same location, elevation, and gimbal pitch with the P4PV2. The object is to show the site before construction, three shots during, and then after construction. These photographs will be proudly displayed in the contractor's office. I would like to be as precise as possible to get the same picture "frame" over several months. I have an idea of where I want to take the shot from, but I will not know any of the location information until I actually fly and frame the shot that I want. I would like some advice, from someone who has done this before, on how to get the same picture framed multiple times, over several months.
STILL photos? Piece of cake. Try that with video.


For stills, use GSPro to mark your Lat/Lon location. Remember your altitude and framing. I find that printing a screen shot is a great way of insuring consistent composition. I do this for video. Stills would be easy.

D
 
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Time lapse video using Litchi linked below. This was first project of this ilk, about 2 years ago. Scroll down to second item on the page "Ford Dealership Construction Time Lapse" : https://hawk-i.us/construction .

Have done some other construction time lapse with Litchi WP photos. Have a project underway using time lapse orthomosaics from mapping that is pretty cool.
 

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