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Drone captures birds eye view of Berkshire Downs and South Oxfordshire

Stunning local landscapes captured by Hedley Thorne's drone

Trish Lee

Trish Lee


01635 886663

HEDLEY Thorne’s beautiful aerial photographs of familiar landscapes along or near the Ridgeway caught our eye on Twitter, so N2 contacted him and asked if we could publish a selection. He describes himself as “just a hobbyist”, but is involved in several projects.

He said: “Working at Heathrow Airport, I have always been intrigued with flight and my slightly nerdy fascination has rubbed off on to my middle son.

“Over the last few years I started wondering about aerial perspectives, particularly on my long walks over the lovely Berkshire Downs on my time off.

“As drones with aerial cameras were coming into the mainstream, I bought a small DJI drone and in my spare time I began capturing these views for my new Instagram account SouthOxfordshire, which gained a bit of a following.

“Over time my hobby found me following various other people associated with the Berkshire Downs and I have begun a collaboration with local artist Anna Dillon who was intrigued to see what her wonderful painted landscapes looked like from the air – we are now hoping to have a joint exhibition at Radley College in 2021.

“I keep this as a hobby – I haven’t got the professional background, abilities or equipment to earn a living from my photography – but nothing brings me more joy than letting people see what I have produced.

“I mix ground and air photography to show the landscapes in the way I see them; this can involve tilting Google Earth to get the perspectives to plan the scenes that I want to capture.

“If you take pictures from too high up, the landscape looks too flat in my opinion – it is often about finding a balance with the camera high enough to trick the eye into thinking the perspective is unusual, but not high enough to make the landscapes all look flat and dull.

“I post-edit my pictures, sometimes to make them a little less like ‘photos’ and more like paintings. Going into 2020 I am hoping to regularly help with some local photo walks, and to keep posting to the SouthOxfordshire Instagram account, from which I love to spend time following other people and admiring what they are doing.”

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