The first Aerial Photography Awards have taken place and a stunning photo of the Dubai Frame has found itself among the winners.
Hopefuls from 65 countries entered the competition and the jury awarded 106 pictures in 22 different categories, including Landscapes, Architecture, Sports, Travel and more.
The photo of the Dubai Frame was taken by Bachir Moukarzel and took first place in the Constructions category. The winning entry was taken at sunrise and shows the Frame standing tall above seemingly endless clouds.
Moukarzel isn’t new to making headlines in the UAE. He’s also well-known for his drone photography and back in April, shared striking video footage taken from the air which showed the empty streets of Dubai during the pandemic.
It was part of a collaboration with the Dubai Media Office, Dubai TV and Dubai Police to capture footage of the city’s urban landscape – usually bustling with cars and people – completely empty.
"When I was filming places like JBR, Downtown Dubai, the fountain area, I was the only one in sight – it was emotional somehow," Moukarzel told The National. "I had goose bumps. It is sad but at the same time, it is beautiful because you can really see that people are obeying the rules. The UAE is home to so many different nationalities and cultures, but we are all in the same boat in the end."
Moukarzel moved to the UAE in 2002, studied finance at the American University in Dubai and has been working for the Rotana Hotel group for the past 11 years.
He started dabbling with drone photography as a hobby about four years ago, but it has since become a big part of his life as he has received international accolades, starting with coming first in the Urban category of the International Drone Photography Contest in 2017.