National Geographic is currently judging their Nature Photographer of the Year contest, taking in entries from professionals and amateurs alike, showcasing scenes of wildlife and natural landscapes.
As entries roll in, the judges are sharing a selection of eye-catching photos. Some of the most breathtaking images are aerial shots taken from planes, helicopters and, ever more frequently, drones.
This point of view and use of drones has grown in popularity in recent years, as technology and price has put aerial photography within the reach of most consumers. Drones have let photographers take advantage of new, exciting perspectives that can turn a flat frozen lake into a Jackson Pollock canvas or allow a viewer to appreciate the subtle gradient of the oceans transitioning to land.