By Marlana Smith
Okey Stoneburner, owner of Stoneburner Drone Service in Shelbyville submitted a photo for the My Missouri 2021 photograph project. Out of 1,000 photos submitted Stoneburner made the final 200.
On Wednesday, February 5, Stoneburner was sent an email on behalf of the State Historical Society of Missouri informing him that his photo was selected as part of the final 200.
The following was in an email to Stoneburner: “The committee selected 200 images that illustrate the geographic and cultural diversity of the State of Missouri at the time of its bicentennial for permanent preservation and exhibition in 2020 and 2021.”
Stoneburner said, “Leslie (Myers) Echternacht from Leonard brought to my attention about the photograph project.
“Having my photo make the top 200 tells me I have learned at least a little bit about photograph in five years,” said Okey.
Since 2015, Okey has been taking photos with a drone. The photo he submitted was taken on November 26, 2019 with a DJI Phantom 4, but recently he has purchased a new DJI Mavic 2 Pro.
He said that UAS (Unmanned Aircraft Systems),or drones, have changed a lot of things since they arrived a few short years ago.
“The vast majority of uses are positive like photography, mapping, site and crop survey, inspections, search and rescue, etc.”
“There are nefarious uses, drug smuggling, bombs, spying, collisions with other aircraft, that seem to be the only thing that corporate media seems to focus on. Keeping up with the regulatory side of the UAS industry is time consuming as it changes often,” said Stoneburner.
Okey’s photograph will be included as part of the My Missouri 2021 exhibition, which will be hosted at twenty sites across the state.