Our Top 5 – #2 Amazing Events

The summer of 2017 brought us the term “the path of totality”. We were very lucky to both witness a total eclipse of the sun here in Middle TN but be in the area where it would be the darkest the longest. For weeks everyone prepared and got their spots lined up. Our photographers were everywhere from north of Nashville, in Kentucky to downtown with the crowds. Below are a few images from that day.

We also had a personal event that was amazing, our show opening at the Lexus of Nashville dealership. Although not the crowd size that the eclipse had, we had enough clients, friends and family to put on one of the best openings that Lexus had seen. The images will be up through the end of February in case you missed it.

Both events were great fun and a nice break to our normal routine..which is anything but normal when you are flying around! FYI we stayed safely on the ground for the eclipse, sometimes standing still is eventful enough!

Full Eclipse Image and Shadow Image by Rick Smith 

Our Top 5 – #3 Video for Days!

We had a great time this year with lots of creative uses for our drone. Almost every week another client would call with a different project.  It varied from filming Nashville landmarks for a lobby video to capturing the fast paced bridge demo and rebuilding on I-24 this fall. If our clients could think it up, we figured out how to film it!

Two unique jobs we worked on was the construction and grand opening of the Wonder Porcelain plant in Lebanon, TN. We did a complete package with monthly aerial progress for T.W. Frierson during construction, several drone videos, interior video of the final plant and even got to film the ribbon cutting with all of the team members. It was a big job (literally, it was thousands of square feet!) but our team rose to the challenge.

The landmark bank building at Broadway and 3rd Ave in Nashville has been going under some extreme renovations by Turner Construction to make way for Blake Shelton’s Ole Red Bar. The entire building was gutted, rebuilt on the inside and is now getting capped off with another roof top bar. The unique construction events were best captured from above and at a close range. We were on site for multiple key events with the drone and can’t wait for a birds-eye view from the top.

Our Top 5 – #4 Concrete & Construction!

Flying around is a blast, but getting to visit the jobs we shoot on the ground is a real treat. This year, we were able to shoot extensively for our client R.C. Mathews on several of their projects during concrete pours. Below are some of those images, we love the early morning look at Belmont University.

The new Tennessee State Museum has been a monthly ground visit for us during key events like topping out, laying of the first stone and even a chili contest for the workers! We were also able to access the current State Museum to photograph the restorations being done for the future exhibits. We will be compiling these images into a project book when the project is finished. View all images taken here at TNMuseumPhotos.com

We love to fly but we are up for getting our shoes dirty! More Images Here

Our Top 5 from 2017 – #5 Bridges

It’s my favorite time of the year, when I look back on all of the images and video we have taken over the past 12 months. Every year I am amazed at all of the great projects we get to be a part of. Some stand out for the great images we were able to capture and some stand out because of all of the gear we got to use (drones and cameras and go-pros!)

Over the next few weeks I would like to share some of our favorite projects, starting with two great bridge projects in Kentucky & Tennessee, the Ohio River Bridges Project and the Lake Barkley Bridge Replacement. We are sad to see the end of the ORB Downtown and East End spans completed by Walsh Group and Walsh-Vinci JV earlier this year. But I am sure Louisville travelers and residents enjoy the beauty and ease of these spans. We shot progress from 2 aircraft each month for the entirety of the project.

Over on another Kentucky/Tennessee Waterway, PCL Constructors is building a replacement bridge over Lake Barkley. Our coverage started with aerial progress and grew to including capturing key events with drone video and stills and ultimately creating a time-lapse video when they floated the span in place. Big Bridges, Big Results.

Click here to view more images from both projects

Click here to view the Time Lapse of Lake Barkley Bridge

Fly through the Holidays

Don’t worry, this is not another BlackFriday-cyber-small-business-deal. We want you to enjoy your holiday, to relax and be stress free. How? By viewing our soothing creative aerial galleries and imagining yourself soaring above a peaceful world….

…Oh, never mind, we do have some things for sale. BUT we think you will enjoy them. They are soothing and relaxing, especially if you put them on your wall! Or your loved one’s wall, or maybe your boss’s wall to make those weekly meetings more bearable.

This season, we are highlighting the images we have on display at Lexus of Nashville. Every image will be available as a loose print (easy to take to grandma’s!) or a canvas print ready to mount right out of the box (impress your in-laws!).

Take some time to relax this holiday with a great view you can enjoy all year round!


Thankful for…

It’s that time of year when we take a minute (even if we don’t have one!) to reflect on all of the year’s successes. This year at Aerial Innovations of TN we did have quite a few  from growing our drone program to wonderful new clients with fantastic new projects and, as always, our fans and champion clients that keep us flying and shooting.

This year, I want to reflect and be thankful for our team that has come together over the past year and really helped to grow the Aerial Innovations Brand and Promise. Without the entire team, we could not continually deliver week after week. Of course we have our ups and downs like every team and muddle through when it’s busy. But this team has owned the work from day one and continually surprise me with their growth and dedication. Many thanks to the “A Team”!

Take some time to thank your team this year. And watch them soar!

It’s my birthday, too, yeah!

It’s birthday month around here…with five of us getting a year older, we thought it would be a good time to highlight some of the members of the flight team that make the magic happen.

All Systems Go! Tiffany is our production/photographer/wrangler on all things aerial and ground. She is the main contact with our clients and photographers and makes all of our images look great before sending them out. Here’s Tiffany on one of her many flights with Lynse in the back seat. Tiffany celebrated back in October with a low key party with her family.


Now for the person behind the camera; Rick! The guy who flies, the man on the ground. Rick is all about the perfect shot, either in the air or on the ground, he will always get the shot whatever it takes. We sure have kept him busy over the last few months, hope he had time to celebrate his day earlier this month. Thanks for all you do Rick!

Photo by Anna Stout


Ron’s birthday was earlier in October but he celebrates every day like it’s his birthday…or that he’s on a beach. We love the laid back demeanor of our go to videographer and editor. Ron has been cranking out some great clips of construction, Nashville landmarks and lots of drone footage. When he’s not chained to the Premiere Editing suite, he gets to play with Paul and the drone. Keep it laid back, Ron!! Here’s Ron & Paul on a recent shoot


Perfect segway to say Happy Birthday to Paul…coming up this week! Paul is in his happy place when the drone is up and all signals are good. He has been operating for us over 2 years now (yay!) and can handle pretty much any situation we throw at him…over water and a big bridge, check, down a closed highway with equipment all around, check, cold of winter, hot of summer…bring it all on. We love your dedication, Paul, Happy Birthday

Did I say five birthdays? Who am I forgetting? oh…our office princess turns 3 this year! We love having Olivia Grace come visit us from time to time. Here she is asking the boss for a raise. To all of those celebrating Fall Birthdays, enjoy!


Fall is the Best

Every season has its fans and things we love but at Aerial Innovations, we love fall best of all. For lots of reasons not including pumpkin spice (but that is one of them.)

We love it for early sunsets!! wait, what?? you hate getting out of work at 5 pm and it’s dark? Well, for us, it means skylines are lit up at twilight and make for beautiful images like the one below taken last fall. When it’s June, by the time the sunsets everyone is at home and the city is dark

Drone image of mid-town Nashville at twilight. Photo by Aerial Innovations of TN.

We love fall colors! Who doesn’t…except maybe those out raking leaves. When we get to fly over the Smokies or our own little Radnor Lake, the eye candy goes on and on and on. It’s these flights that make the hot summers, cold winters and bleak spring landscapes all worth it. 


And we love the holidays! We are so thankful for the great projects we get to shoot for our faithful clients. Every year feels like it speeds up from January to December but now, in November, we take a breath and relax and just be Thankful. 

SkySupplies: A Creative Eye

Every photographer’s dream is to have the perfect light and situation to create stunning images. Since we can not control the sun…or the weather….or what time of day we shoot most of the times, it’s rare that we get to fully flex our creative passions. Oh, we use our creative eye on everything we do but it’s much different when we are hired to document an event as opposed to document and have access to creative tools like sunrises, fog and a set as interesting as one we had the other week.

Rick was asked to shoot for client, R.C. Mathews Contractors on their final concrete pour at Belmont University. Luckily for Rick, it was at sunrise. Also lucky for Rick, there was a gorgeous set, incoming fog from the sunrise and a willing client who loves it when we get our creative juices flowing. The results from this mix of freedom and circumstance are no less than our most artistic work.

The frame of the building creates lines that draw the viewer in, the fog and light create mystery and allow the viewer to imagine another world above the city, and finally, the choices that the photographer makes are his own based on years of experience and “seeing” how the camera can process the scene.

At Aerial Innovations of TN, one of our most important “SkySupplies” is our creative eye. In most of our past posts, we showed our photographers in action. In this post, we’ll look through Rick’s creative eye to see the spectacular images he created that morning. You can catch more of our creative work on our Instagram Account, which is curated by Rick Smith.