Monday, July 10, 2017

Drone Photography in Provence

This gorgeous shot of a Provence lavender field at harvest time, taken by London-based French photographer Jerome Courtial, has won 1st Prize (Nature category) in the 4th Annual International Drone Photography Contest He calls it "Summer Trim" and you can click to enlarge.
The contest is organized by Dronestagram, the France-based drone-photo sharing website, in partnership with National Geographic. They received 8,000 entries this year, with submissions split into four categories: Nature, Urban, People and Creativity. You can see all the 2017 winners here.

The shot was taken near Valensole in mid July last year, using a Phantom 4 camera drone. "We were just driving without a specific destination in mind," Jerome tells me, "and I was looking for nice compositions. I was especially keeping an eye out for tractors as they would provide a focal point. A lavender field from above would just look like a purple carpet without something else on it. That’s when we found this beautiful field and two tractors that looked like they were about to start work on it. I just had time to start the drone and follow them until they had achieved the composition I wanted!"

You can learn more about Jerome on his websites here and here. The first focuses on his main business, which is taking photos and videos for hotels. The second site provide lots of great tips for taking better drone photos.  You can also find him on FacebookInstagram and TwitterTo reach him directly:  

Interested in learning to fly a drone yourself? A small group of drone pilots in St. Remy is offering two-hour lessons for beginners, in a field adjacent to the hotel Château des Alpilles. According to licensed drone pilot and instructor Nathalie Freysz, drones are being used by farmers to check their fields, crops and animals; by property owners who want video for insurance or tax purposes; by homeowners to promote rentals or sales...and most of all, just for fun. The group uses Hexacopter DJI 550 drones equipped with GoPro video cameras; a two-hour lesson for two people costs 200€ and includes a souvenir photo or video. The classes can be booked on demand, year round, with group prices and multi-lesson packages are available. For more info:


  1. How cool is that! Great post Julie thanks for sharing.

  2. Lovely photograph. Worthy winner. :)

  3. Wow! What a great photo, as are all the other winners.
    There's a book that came out recently called "Les Alpilles vues du ciel" with over 100 drone photos of the Alpilles - the mountains, churches, vineyards, ruined castles, etc. Very cool.