For its latest cover, Time magazine partnered with Intel to send nearly 1,000 drones into the sky, forming Time's iconic masthead.
The cover plays perfectly into the magazine's cover story called "The Drone Age," which focuses on unmanned aerial vehicles and their increasing popularity over the years.
How Time Magazine Created Its Dazzling Drone Cover
To achieve this, Time used 958 illuminated drones powered by Intel's processors. They're the same drones used in the Olympic opening ceremony earlier this year and Lady Gaga's Super Bowl Halftime Show last year. Time collaborated with Intel's Drone Light Show team and Astraeus Aerial Cinema Systems to fly and capture the drone formation above Folsom, California. That's right — the drones were captured by another drone, which marks the first Time cover captured by a camera drone, PetaPixel notes.
The project is one of the biggest drone shows ever demonstrated, measuring 100 meters — or 328 feet — tall. The shoot took place earlier this May, and Time wanted to create this kind of cover to illustrate how popular drones have become in various industries, especially the consumer sector. Not only are they used in the film industry to take dazzling top-down shots, but they're also used by NASA, Microsoft, and host of other businesses. Normal people who can afford a drone use it for beautiful travel shots as well.
Drone Articles For You To Read
Alex Fitzpatrick's accompanying essay on Time called "Drones Are Here to Stay. Get Used to It" is now available online.
"With any technology, there are certain inflection points when it goes from being something perpetually in the near future to being a part of everyday life. For years, drones have been hovering on the cusp — used by militaries and relatively small numbers of hobbyists but not part of the larger culture," asserts Fitzpatrick. "Drones have since become a key part of the military's arsenal, and their use in conflict zones around the world has expanded under both the Obama and Trump Administrations. Civilian uses, however, have long been more promise than reality."
The magazine also has a number of other pieces that focus on how drones are used, including an article on how scientists are aided by drones to conserve marine life, and another piece on how drones help fight against illegal poaching, and finally, how the movie business has become obsessed with the tool as a new cinematographic expression.
The cover can be found on the June 11 issue of Time, which hits newsstands June 1. See how it all came together below: