'Stadium in flames' among the highlights of Drone Photo Awards 2020!

Drone Photo Awards 2020
Commended image, 'Kleanthis Vikelidis stadium in flames' (Image credit: Dimitris Tosidis)

The winners of this year's Drone Photo Awards have been announced as part of the Siena Awards Festival, offering a stunning showcase of the world seen from above by photographers around the globe. 

Winners have been crowned in nine categories, with the stunning 'Love Heart of Nature' – an aerial shot of a school of salmon forming a heart shape, while evading a hungry shark – taking home overall Photo of the Year honors.

• Shoot from the skies: Best camera drones (opens in new tab)

Of the images submitted from 126 countries, a total of 45 photographs will feature in the sixth annual Siena Awards Festival, which take place in Siena from 24 October to 29 November. The Above Us Only Sky exhibition will be held at the Accademia dei Fisiocritici, one of the oldest Italian science museums. 

Below are the winners of each category. The full gallery of winning and commended images can be viewed here (opens in new tab), and more information about the full event can be found at the Siena Awards Festival website (opens in new tab).

(Image credit: Jim Picôt)

Photo of the Year – 'Love Heart of Nature' by Jim Picôt

"In winter, a shark is inside a salmon school when, chasing the baitfish, the shape became a heart shape."

(Image credit: Tomasz Kowalski)

Urban – 'Alien Structure on Earth' by Tomasz Kowalski

"Sometimes we need to change the perspective to feel the strength of the structure stronger than we've ever thought. The Petronas Towers, also known as the Petronas Twin Towers, are twin skyscrapers in Kuala Lumpur."

(Image credit: Dmitrii Viliunov)

Wildlife – 'Where Herons Live' by Dmitrii Viliunov

"Many think that herons make nests in reeds or in a swamp. In fact, they nest in the tops of huge trees and with a drone it is sometimes possible to see them."

(Image credit: Roberto Corinaldesi)

Sport – 'On the Sea' by Roberto Corinaldesi

"An aerial view of swimmers, where the sea becomes the place to take refuge, between the blue carpet and the white foam of the waves."

(Image credit: Alessandra Meniconzi)

People – 'Frozen Land' by Alessandra Meniconzi

"With temperatures of minus 30°C, winters in the Eurasian steppe can be brutal. But life doesn't stop, and local people move from one village to another with a sledge, crossing icy rivers and lakes."

(Image credit: Joseph Cheires)

Nature – 'Gray Whale Plays Pushing Tourists' by Joseph Cheires

"At the end of the gray whale season, I was told about a gray whale that, for the last 3 years, used to play with the boats, pushing them gently. So we went back the year after and incredibly the gray whale appeared and this shot is the result."

(Image credit: Paul Hoelen)

Abstract – 'Phoenix Rising' by Paul Hoelen

"The phoenix rising is a symbol of re-emergence from the ashes of fire. This is symbolized through the beginnings of an actual regeneration process at the industrial mining site of Lake Owens. After a destructive past and the creation of the most toxic dustbowl in America, migratory birds are returning, and life is beginning anew…"

(Image credit: Tomer Appelbaum)

Life Under COVID-19 – 'Black Flag' by Tomer Appelbaum

"Thousands of Israelis maintain social distancing due to Covid-19 restrictions while protesting against Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Rabin Square on 19 April 2020."

(Image credit: Mohamed Azmeel)

Wedding – 'Tropical Bride' by Mohamed Azmeel

"I used the flowers and the leaves leftover from the decoration of a wedding, to make something creative."

(Image credit: Srikanth Mannepuri)

Series – 'Empty seas and crowded shores' by Srikanth Mannepuri

"This is a tale of the slowly collapsing marine life where the fastest fishes aren’t fast enough, the gentle giants not big enough, and the apex predators not strong enough to withstand the weight of human greed and over-consumption. This is a tale of emptying seas and crowded shores."

Video: Life Under COVID-19 – 'NY on Pause' by Pablo Barrera Edward Kostakis

"The city that never sleeps took a nap in 2020. A once in a lifetime opportunity for the city to rethink, reshape and wake up to a shiner tomorrow."

Video: General – 'Showreel 2019' by Bachir Moukarzel

"This is my showreel for year 2019, an exciting journey with my drone all over Dubai, from city shots to sport, Dubai from my prospective."

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The editor of Digital Camera World, James has 21 years experience as a magazine and web journalist and started working in the photographic industry in 2014 (as an assistant to Damian McGillicuddy, who succeeded David Bailey as Principal Photographer for Olympus). In this time he shot for clients as diverse as Aston Martin Racing, Elinchrom and L'Oréal, in addition to shooting campaigns and product testing for Olympus, and providing training for professionals. This has led him to being a go-to expert for camera and lens reviews, photographic and lighting tutorials, as well as industry analysis, news and rumors for publications such as Digital Camera Magazine (opens in new tab)PhotoPlus: The Canon Magazine (opens in new tab)N-Photo: The Nikon Magazine (opens in new tab)Digital Photographer (opens in new tab) and Professional Imagemaker, as well as hosting workshops and demonstrations at The Photography Show (opens in new tab). An Olympus and Canon shooter, he has a wealth of knowledge on cameras of all makes – and a fondness for vintage lenses and instant cameras.