When publisher Thames & Hudson approached editor Ayperi Karabuda Ecer about curating a book on drone photography, she was brand new to aerial imagery. But that quickly changed for the former VP at Thomson Reuters and editor in chief of Magnum Photos Paris.
To curate the book, Dronescapes: The New Aerial Photography from Dronestagram, Karabuda Ecer sifted through about 70,000 to 100,000 drone photos submitted as part of a contest. Only 250 made the final cut.
Always keeping an eye on photography trends, Karabuda Ecer is fascinated by drones. “The selfie was big, drone photography is kind of the opposite,” she tells TIME. “It’s always about the big picture. Seeing what’s around us. I think with all the narcissistic things, portraits of each other or pictures of ourselves, it’s really liberating to look at things where the surroundings are the center. There is a lot of space in these and that is really welcome.”
Karabuda Ecer is particularly excited to see how drone photography evolves from here. She believes it has potential to help photojournalists cover topics like our changing environment, and to help artists create new works involving patterns and shadows. “Anything today that opens doors for new uses of photography is exciting,” she says. “There is a whole generation of people now who will become drone photographers. Clearly it is an opportunity.”
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