An aerial photograph showing the protests against the judicial overhaul in Tel Aviv won first place in the prestigious international Drone Photo Awards 2023 competition considered one of the world's leading photo contests focused on drone photography and part of the Siena Awards
The picture was selected out of nearly 14.000 images submitted by amateur and professional photographers from 104 countries worldwide, and judged by a panel of renowned photographers.
The competition comprises nine categories: Urban, Wildlife, Sport, People, Nature, Abstract, Wedding, Storytelling, and Video. This year's second place was given to Sebastian Piórek with his photo of a Polish playground, and in the third place was Paweł Jagiełło who photographed a sunken church tower in the Italian village of Curon Venosta, submerged in the construction of a dam in the 1950's.
Photographer Or Adar told Ynet that the image titled "Must Resist" was taken during a demonstration in Tel Aviv last March. "I document the battle for democracy from the perspective of the drone," Or, a former combat pilot in the Air Force said. "I feel like I am providing aerial assistance to the protests."
The photograph depicts protesters holding a banner featuring a picture of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu alongside Russian President Vladimir Putin, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban, and Former Supreme Leader of Iran Ayatollah Khomeini. On both sides of the banner, there are posters with drawings of fists and the inscription "Must Resist" in Hebrew and English.
Adar had been documenting the protests around the country after hundreds of thousands took to the street demonstrating against the government's announced legislation to change the judicial system which many see as an assault on the Supreme Court and a threat to democracy.
"My job is to go where people are protesting," Adar told Ynet. "To document the protests from the air and convey to the protesters the magnitude and strength of their presence, along with thousands of others in the demonstration. We see that it motivates and strengthens them, and encourages them to go out and protest week after week and stand up for what is important to them."
Another Israeli photographer who was praised by the competition's judges documented a pink line sprayed along Jerusalem's roads by artists and design students to symbolize the connection between an independent judiciary and the principles of freedom of expression and creativity. he judges is Oren Alon, whose photo gallery from Jerusalem was also featured on the competition's website. The photographs capture pink lines sprayed by artists and art and design students on the city's streets. These lines symbolize a visual representation of the inseparable connection between an independent judicial system and the principles of freedom of expression and creativity.
Adar has been photographing with drones for eight years. He started with nature photography, but during the COVID-19 pandemic, he began photographing protests as well. "I am part of a group called the 'Drone Commando.' we are around 100 volunteers, and we go out every week, sometimes multiple times a week, to photograph protests across the country," he said.
Another Israeli photographer who documents the protests and received praise from the judges is Oren Alon, whose photo gallery from Jerusalem is aalso featured on the competition's website.
The photographs capture pink lines sprayed by artists and art and design students on the city's streets. These lines symbolize a visual representation of the inseparable connection between an independent judicial system and the principles of freedom of expression and creativity.