Taking pictures near Graveyards

Just a thought, I Fancy taking pictures of old Churches, my thinking is because I never see pictures with many Gravestones in them, is this one of those things you just don’t do , obviously I’m not going to take pics of the Stones,

personal preference. much thw same as terrestrial photography.

I did this as term project at uni back in the dark ages

Loads of stuff on Google and insta


As long as you don’t ask someone grieving by a graveside to show more emotion I think you should be fine. Just be respectful if approached.

This is one I took in the grounds of Otley Parish Church, though it’s no longer an active graveyard, meaning burials in the last hundred years or more have taken place at the Cemetery on Pool Road.


When we did the last birthday comp my isolated church submission included some graves. I was a bit green with the drone at this point (I thank the Birthday comp for rapidly improving my flying skills over a very short amount of time since) anyway in the rush to get my picture, I didn’t really think about the gravestones and probably could have submitted a better angled picture.

Someone else took offence because their friend was buried there. What are the odds!

Like anything religion it probably comes down to your own personal preference, and like everything in life, someone’s probably going to take offence somewhere. The entry on dronescene and the offending picture remains.

As others have said, be respectful, don’t include mourners, and try and use your creative license to capture the essence of what the scene actually is.


Great picture, has it got a filters,

Its had the shit snapseeded out of it ;o)


I have been asked by a graveyard (Brookwood Cemetery, Woking) not to take readable pictures of headstones but most don’t seem to provide guidance. If the intent is to avoid upsetting relatives, it seems to me recent gravestones are more sensitive than historic graves. I try to fly more cautiously around people in graveyards but I do fly lower when it is quiet. I don’t think banning photography of the whole area is reasonable.

@firstadekit said it well “As others have said, be respectful, don’t include mourners, and try and use your creative license to capture the essence of what the scene actually is.”

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Great picture and as mentioned well said :+1: :+1:

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Church-/Graveyards are publicly accessible and as such I wouldn’t have thought the deceased (or their living relatives) had much of a right to privacy regarding people reading/photographing their headstones/mausoleums/etc.

That said, I concur with the commonsense approach of applying respect where necessary. No need to be a dick. :wink:


There is a local cemetery near me with a small chapel. I contacted the cemeteries department of the council and was told that I could fly and photograph so long as there was no service going on and none of the gravestones could be read in the shots, seemed reasonable to me.


I’ve got one on DroneScene from the time of the competition too. There are thousands of photos out there of graveyards taken with all sorts of cameras, I’d imagine so long as you aren’t buzzing around with a drone in the middle of a funeral most people would be OK about it.

That seems to be everybody’s answer, I just thought I would chime in as I don’t recall seeing pics with Gravestones in, probably are but not come across them.

I visit Whitby weekly and walk through the St Mary cemetery on my way to the Whitby Brewery . Due to the connection with Dracula, thousands of photos are taken every year, including Drone videos/photos. Apart from the signs requesting " Please do not stand on graves " there are no other restriction’s that I am aware of. Like others have advised it just takes common sense and respect .

Don’t think you’ll get any objections from the residents.

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Well you’d certainly get a surprise if you were standing there and a hand came up out of a grave and grabbed your leg. :zombie:

I’ve taken many photos of churches and the gravestones in the past from the ground perspective, mostly are either derelict or not in use at all. A close inspection of the graveyard will tell you if it’s still being used by newer recent stones. As for persons actually in the vicinity of the church or graveyard I personally wouldn’t fly around until the persons have left the area, as a mark of responsibility and respect. I’ve never been approached by anyone whilst taking photos using a camera. But like everything,everyone behaves differently at that moment.
An overgrown grassy graveyard has an appeal of wanting to be recorded day or night

A couple of examples. The first was taken with permission of the church priest, at a quiet time when nobody would be disturbed. The second was a rural church with nobody around.

I wouldn’t fly either of these if anyone is about, not just obvious mourners, people may have other reasons not to want to be disturbed in this sort of place.

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It’s odd that they ask no names are visible whilst there are firms that make a profit out of selling you photos of gravestones from around the world eg www.twgpp.org (no connection to business, just remembered this sort of organisation when tracing my family history).

HIya, I was thinking about churches too. I would like to get some close -up shots of gargoyles and stuff. Do you need permission from each church? Or would they be classed as public buildings? Sorry for jumping in on your post John.

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