The proliferation of lightweight and inexpensive drones has created a new frontier in aerial photography—a combination of documentary observation, artful abstraction, and vertiginous thrill, all within a relatively intimate distance.
“People are so fascinated by images of Earth from above maybe for the same reasons for which man has always dreamed of flying,” says Guillaume Jarett, managing director at Dronestaga.m, a thriving online community of drone photography enthusiasts. Dronestagra.m recently compiled over 250 of the most eye-catching images posted to the site in a book, Dronescapes.
“Just look at people in an airplane, stuck on the window seat looking down. With satellite images, and apps like Google Earth, we are now used to seeing Earth from above,” he says. “But drone photos bring a new way of seeing the world, at low altitude, near landscapes and buildings, like a bird would do.”