Steven Stanley Manolakis

ABOUT STEVEN

"YOU HAVEN'T SEEN AUSTRALIA UNLESS YOU SEE IT FROM THE AIR. THE COASTLINE, THE COLOURS OF THE INLAND, THE CLAYPANS, THE FORESTS; IT’S JUST ALL SO BEAUTIFUL. YOU'D NEVER SEE THAT FROM THE ROAD. PEOPLE CLIMB MOUNTAINS TO SEE THESE THINGS. YOU SEE THAT EVERY TIME YOU TAKE OFF.”

– Nancy, Bird-Walton

Steven Stanley Manolakis is an aerial photographer based in Sydney. His images of Australian landscapes photographed from above provide a unique view of what lies surrounding us.

Since he began shooting in 2018, Steven has earned more than 50 international photography awards and has been published in numerous magazines, including All About Photo, Australian Photography, and The Eye of Photography. Most notably, he was selected as a finalist in the 2020 Australian Geographic Nature Photographer of the Year, awarded eight Honorable Mentions in The International Photography Awards, and has received two Best of Best distinctions in the Creative Communication Awards two years in a row.

Steven’s work is admired for his uncanny ability to draw out distinct geographical features while flying over vast natural landscapes, creating images with an emphasis on subtlety, symmetry, and minimalism.

As an aerial photographer, I hire out fixed-wing airplanes and helicopters to capture remote landscapes from above. I prefer working with a medium format camera from aircraft to ensure the highest possible image quality. This allows me to print and frame my artwork in large dimensions. The images I take have been described as fine art abstract paintings. Sometimes they can appear textured by brush strokes and coloured with paint. Not all artists are capable of creating art that transcends mediums, and I feel fortunate to have the ability to do so.

My work is inspired by a beautiful girl I met and fell in love with. Although we are not together, she remains someone special to me, and my photos attempt to capture the feelings I have of her. As I fly above a vast landscape, I attempt to find and draw out distinct natural featuresthings that remind me of her beauty, personality, and the impact she’s had on me.