Now an imperial caftan, now a colorful antique glass collection or a turquoise coast where sailboats glide… We are bringing you a selection of the exactly 360 covers our magazine has worn in the past thirty jam-packed years. Even if the feature articles we so carefully compile are forgotten, we know that Skylife covers always leave a mark. On our thirtieth anniversary, we have chosen 25 of our magazine’s most outstanding covers and sorted them into five themes. Some selections from Skylife’s most memorable covers:

An indigo sea and a white sailboat skimming over the water… Skylife celebrated the 50th anniversary of Turkish Airlines in June 1983 with this stunning travel cover. The İshak Pasha Palace (December 1987), from Casablanca to Marakkesh (December 2005), and Japan (December 2011) are just a few other covers that haunt our memories. Our cover on the theme, Honeymooning in Turkey, which appeared in July 2011, is due to pilot and photographer, Ahmet Bilal Arslan, who made scores of paragliding flights at Babadağ in Fethiye for the shoot.

Imperial firmans, Aizanoi, Zeugma and more… A Mevlevî ritual at Avanos Sarıhan was yet another unforgettable cover on Skylife, which has brought the world the experiences of modern time travelers during its thirty-year history. Yelda Baler, who shot the photo, says that the venue was eminently suitable for the sema, or whirling ceremony, which the dervishes perform in a mystical atmosphere with a yearning for union with God. Our December 2009 cover on the Harbor of Theododius resonated widely due to the finds, which take Istanbul's history 2,000 years further back than was previously known.

Skylife boasts covers that represent the apogee of design in publishing not only in photographs but in paintings, miniatures, engravings, even drawings. Five of the biggest hits are: Suleiman the Magnificent (December 1994), The Story of the Graphic Novel in Turkey (March 2001), Ramazan in Istanbul (August 2011) and The Hagia Sophia (August 2013). But the Yunus Emre cover done by artist Ahmet Güneştekin is the Skylife all-time favorite. This world-renowned artist says that the solar bursts in his painting, which he calls “Love is Like a Sun”, refer to Yunus.

A long-standing tradition is sometimes best conveyed in a detail. We too have illustrated Turkey’s rich culture through details of Iznik tiles, antique glass bottles, imperial caftans, even a helmet. But perhaps our most impressive cover in this sense was one on the theme of the Turkish bath in April 2004. The wooden bath clogs, photographed by Servet Dilber, photographic editor of Skylife for four years, encapsulate the entire Ottoman bath tradition. Dilber notes that he always went to the bath after the shoots to prolong the pleasure.

The photographs of numerous distinguished Istanbul photographers from Ara Güler to İzzet Kehribar have graced the covers of Skylife over the years. Momentous events in the city have also put in the occasional appearance on the magazine’s cover. The opening of the Fatih Sultan Mehmet Bridge, for example, appeared on our cover in the summer of 1988. Another of Skylife’s memorable covers appeared in January 2006 under the title, Snow Blue Istanbul. İbrahim Göksungur, who shot the photo, says he was moved to click his shutter while walking in Maçka when he noticed how beautiful the city looked in the snow.

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