SkyPixel 8th Annual Photo & Video Contest Winners Announced


SkyPixel 8th Annual Photo & Video Contest Winners Announced

Competition Sees More Than 2x More Submissions, Sharing Stories From All Walks of Life


March 3, 2023 – SkyPixel, one of the world’s most popular aerial photography communities, today announces the winners of the SkyPixel 8th Annual Photo & Video Contest. Co-organized with DJI, this year’s competition attracted over 65 thousand submissions – a 120% increase from the previous year. The contest welcomed creations from across the community, which includes professional photographers, aerial enthusiasts, and many new talents, all inspiring each other to share their visual and personal stories.


The Story Behind All Of Us

Perhaps what drew more submissions than ever to this year’s contest was its central theme, “The Story Behind.” With this concept in mind, SkyPixel called upon users to share what mattered to them most, both with the photo and video work they submitted and the reflections they shared on their submission page. Stories filled each of the contest categories, from nature and travel, to city and sports. One user caught a glimpse of a black-necked crane, a protected species in the Tibetan plateau, as it spread its wings over Yamdrok Lake. Another discovered the beauty of Papua New Guinea in its landscapes, creatures, and people in a tight-knit ecosystem. From the city to the sea, this year’s contest opened a world of beauty and connection for all to see.


Stories That Stood Out The Most

The 8th Annual Photo & Video Contest was assessed by a Judging Panel of incredible professionals in the industry, including Claudio Miranda (Academy Award-winning cinematographer), Anne Farrar (Assistant Managing Editor of Photography for National Geographic Magazine), Phil Pastuhov (Director of Cinematography for films such as The Lord of the Rings), Hasselblad Master Benjamin Everett, Air Pixels founder Tobias Hägg, photographer George Steinmetz, Director of Photography Toby Strong, cinematographer Jingping Yu, and photographer Wang Ning. After careful deliberation, the panel proudly presents the final winners for the year.


8th Annual Best Work Prize – Video: “Why I Travel the World Alone” by Bashir Abu Shakra

This year’s video judging panel, which includes award-winning Cinematographers and Directors of Photography, chose Bashir Abu Shakra’s video, “Why I Travel the World Alone.” This autobiographical short film mixes sweeping mountaintop landscapes with Shakra’s childhood family recordings to share his personal journey, complete with every struggle and dream that he turned into reality. Judge Jingping Yu admires that Shakra “Cares about the beauty in front of him, but also places his courage and bravery in it, and the height is no longer limited to the magnificence in front of him. There is beauty in the dialogue he is having with himself.”

“Why I Travel the World Alone” is an epic story four years in the making, full of arduous trips and retakes to get the perfect shot at every destination. “Hundreds of pieces of footage had to be compressed into only four minutes of video,” Shakra explained. “In such big projects, patience is the key. I kept my best shots unpublished for years waiting for the whole project to be completed. I even had to take semesters off in college just to be able to travel and complete this project, but that's how much I believed in it.”


8th Annual Best Work Prize – Photo: “Floral Dress” by “Khánh Phan

This year’s photo judging panel, including  renowned photographers and publication editors, chose Khánh Phan’s photo, “Floral Dress.” This bird’s-eye portrait reveals two women wading in a pond as they collect a harvest of water lilies, whose white and magenta blooms create a floating floral dress. Judge Anne Farrar notes: “A near-perfect color scheme with lovely waves of flowers moving across the frame, this beautiful image is so well-composed and balanced, it brings a sense of beauty and calmness.”

Captured in her hometown of Long An, Vietnam, Khán Phan wanted to share a time-honored tradition of her ancestors. “They have worked as water lily pickers for many years, having learned the craft from their mothers and grandmothers. I believe these women are most beautiful when working because labor creates value and happiness. They also let me express my mission to create what is hard to imagine, and I am truly grateful to them.”

With the distinction of Annual Best Work prizes, Bashir Abu Shakra and Khánh Phan will each receive over USD $15K in prizes that include the Hasselblad 907X Anniversary Edition Kit, a trophy, and award certificate. The SkyPixel team is hopeful that these prizes will continue encouraging the winners to pursue their passion into a growing hobby or burgeoning career, and in turn inspire the communities around them.

In addition to the Annual Best Works, the SkyPixel contest also awarded winners in both categories.

  • Top 10 Photo and Top 10 Video winners will each receive the DJI Mavic 3 Fly More Combo (DJI RC Pro) or its DJI Credit equivalent, a trophy, and award certificate, with a total value of USD $4048.
  • The 10 Nominated Prizes will each receive the Osmo Action 3 Adventure Combo and award certificate, with a total value of USD $439.
  • The 10 People’s Choice Prizes will each receive the Osmo Mobile 6 and award certificate, with a total value of USD $159.


To view the photos and videos of these winners, please visit the official SkyPixel website for direct links to these works.


More Stories To tell

As the SkyPixel 8th Annual Photo & Video Contest draws to a close, the works shared in these three months reveal that all over the world, the passion for exploration, wonder, and  storytelling is stronger than ever. Whether from the ground with a handheld camera or above with an aerial drone, the possibilities for discovery are still endless. DJI and SkyPixel are grateful to the community for creating a reminder of the beauty around us, and look forward to the continued works to be shared on the platform.


About SkyPixel

Founded in 2014, SkyPixel is a leading global community for aerial photographers and videographers. The platform has over 42 million registered users and hosts thousands of aerial images and videos uploaded daily by users around the world, with unique content reaching over 1 million views. In addition, SkyPixel also promotes the growth of the aerial community with a brand-new Popular Locations section that features tips from key experts on producing the best aerial photography in 30 popular regions. The SkyPixel community also welcomes video content shot with the DJI Osmo Series handheld cameras and gimbals, which can be edited and shared directly from the user's DJI Mimo app. For more info, please visit


About DJI

Since 2006, DJI has led the world with civilian drone innovations that have empowered individuals to take flight for the first time, visionaries to turn their imagination into reality, and professionals to transform their work entirely. Today, DJI serves to build a better world by continuously promoting human advancement. With a solution-oriented mindset and genuine curiosity, DJI has expanded its ambitions into areas such as agriculture, public safety, surveying and mapping, and infrastructure inspection. In every application, DJI products deliver experiences that add value to lives around the world in more profound ways than ever before.


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