International Drone Photography Contest 2018 – The Winners in Pictures

31 January 2019

A muddy pool of hippos has won the 2018 International Drone Photography Contest.

It was just one of thousands of worldwide entries in the fifth annual drone photography competition run by Dronestagram, an online platform that allows users to upload their best aerial photography shots.

Each year, the website celebrates drone photography by selecting three of its users’ best shots.

Eric Dupin, the founder of France-based Donestagram, said: ‘Despite the regulations and constraints that increasingly weigh on recreational drones, creativity has not been curtailed and the unique worldview allowed by drones continues to make us dream.’

Professional drone photographer Martin Sanchez, known on Instagram as zekedrone, captured ‘Hungry Hippos’ during a trip to Tanzania.

He described how he almost didn’t get the shot:

‘Towards the end of the year I was planning on going to Utah, USA until last minute my friend Ty Poland asked me if I wanted to go on assignment to Tanzania and capture wildlife. As exciting as it sounded I almost turned this opportunity down. Fast forward to finally saying yes to this trip we ended up in some isolated area in Tanzania where we came upon a small body of water. As we approached closer my eyes couldn’t believe the surprise that was in front of us. I knew in that instant moment I needed to get the most unique perspective of this once in a lifetime experience.’

Vietnamese aerial photographer Trung Pham won second place with an image of a huge fishing net spooling off the back of a boat.

‘Fishing Net in Vietnam’, by Trung Pham, Second Place in Dronestagram’s 2018 International Drone Photography Contest

He described how he captured the image while out hoping to shoot lobsters from the sky:

‘It was a such memorable moment when I was driving from Ho Chi Minh city to Tuy Hoa, a small city in central Vietnam, with distance of 500Km. I planned to take a photo of lobsters breeding village nearby. When I take off my drone, I saw a fishing boat with a huge fishing net. I did not miss the moment to capture it.’

Ukrainian travel photographer Yevhen Samuchenko, also known as Q-Lieb-In came third with his image ‘2 People, 2 Dogs & 4 Shadows’.

‘2 People, 2 Dogs & 4 Shadows’ by qliebin, third place in Dronestagram’s 2018 International Drone Photography Contest

He described how he planned for the perfect light conditions:

‘This photo was captured at the morning on the Black Sea beach (Odessa, Ukraine). I live near this place and nearly each day walking near the sea with my drone. The day before I took this picture, I noticed that at certain at morning time the shadows from people fall exactly perpendicular to the water line. The next day I came specially at this time – I flew along the surf and searched for interesting plots. At this time, people walked with their dogs and I took a few photos, and then chose the best shot, where the silhouettes are best visible.’