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Making Movies from the Sky? State Drone Film Festival Seeks Entries

Chase Guttman

Central New York is quickly becoming a leading drone hub in America. Professional companies and hobbyists who have been capturing aerial views on their flights might want to consider taking their films to the next level. The second-annual New York State Fair Drone Film Festival is seeking entries for films produced with drones. Mike Massurin, the Managing Director of the film festival, says the competition added “news” to the list of categories.

"By putting a drone up into the air, whether it's with the hurricanes or wildfires, you're able to really get views of the situation that wouldn't be possible with someone who's on the ground."

Massurin says it’s just one of the ways these Unmanned Aerial Systems are being incorporated into our everyday lives. As Central New York becomes a center for drone innovation, Massurin sees the festival as a way to show off New York’s technological progress. It’s also attracting talented drone operators including the competition's newest judge.

"A gentleman by the name of Chase Guttman is a senior at Newhouse. He's written a book ... The Handbook of Drone Photography."

Guttmann says his entry into the world of drone photography was completely natural.

"I just started building drones and interacting with drones, and then flying and buying my own, and that's how I became immersed with storytelling with drones through travel and through the travel I'm already doing."

Credit Chase Guttman

In addition to video, Guttman encourages people to experiment incorporating digital still-photography with drones as it takes off.

"In my view, drones own the airspace just out of reach of the longest selfie stick and the lowest-hovering helicopter, and they really can go where no other technology can go.”

Some of the categories of the Drone Film Fest are Landscape or Architecture, Sports, Students and Corporate-Industrial-Business. The deadline to enter is June 30. More details are at

Credit Chase Guttman
Drones have the ability to capture breathtaking views, like this one of Niagara Falls.