Holding an Umbrella for a Bear: The Making of a VIP Commercial in Croatia

(all photos copyright Romulic and Stojcic)

Having worked on promoting tourism over the last few years, I have been very fortunate to meet some very interesting people and see some pretty cool things. I think it is fair to say that there is still so much of this country that is totally unknown to the foreign tourist, and it is one of the things that I love about what I do - every day brings a new discovery.

One of the people I have really enjoyed meeting on that journey is top Croatian photographer Mario Romulic, whose images have been promoted throughout the world, from official pictures for the Croatian National Tourist Board to a recent exhibition on Croatia's EU entry in Brussels.  Along with partner Drazen Stojcic, Romulic has become the timelapse master of the region, and this outstanding compilation, called Timelapse Croatia, set the Croatian media alight when it was released - some 150,000 photos in this clip under 5 minutes - with several commentators hailing it as the best promotion of Croatia thus far. 

Apart from the many things I love about their work, there is perhaps no other photographer which covers the whole country in all its facets so thoroughly. Their photography of the wild Croatian interior is impressive indeed, and so it was little surprise to hear that they had been hired by leading mobile phone network VIP to film a commercial.

Set in the imposing Velebit region, Romulic sets out to capture the wildlife close up, in particular the famous and fearsome Lika bear. Check out the commercial here - it has been a hit on Croatian television. 

A great commercial, and while the bear looked very convincing, the story of the filming of the advert was beautifully told in a series of pictures on the Romulic and Stojcic Facebook page (link below). They give a fascinating insight into just how much technology, professionalism and equipment goes into making an end product which looks so natural and simple.  

For more pictures from behind the scenes of this shoot, check out the Romulic and Stojcic Facebook page. For more info about the photo meisters from Osijek, visit 









Munich Revisited: A Walk in the January Holiday Sun

It is some 25 years since I started what can be loosely labelled a career in the wonderful city of Munich. A male chambermaid was the unlikely first job at Hotel Sheraton, a position I managed to hold down for an impressive three weeks until I was fired for being friends with a guy who had convinced the management that his pet snake was on the loose in the five-star hotel. 

My fortunes improved gradually and I worked my way up to be a bellboy in the best hotel in town, the Kempinski Vier Jahreszeiten, where my chores included changing Henry Kissinger's ashtray, asking the Rolling Stones to turn the music down and organising hookers for celebrities such as... well, perhaps I should not say.

Twenty-five years have gone by, and I found myself alone in Munich on January 6, 2014, the holiday of Three Kings. My only tasks for the day were to walk around the old haunts, breathe in the Munich air, and clear my head ready for the challenges of the New Year. A walk past my former 5-star employer revealed that it had aged better than me...  

Munich is such a stunning city, and car has been taken to preserve its magic. Examples include the tasteful signage of global brands, in keeping with the original architecture. 

And the churches along the Isar River were magnificent in the unseasonably warm early January sun.  

There were plenty along the banks of the Isar soaking up the rays, where last year there would have been snow.  

Some hardy souls went a little further. I did not stop to see if this chap went for a swim, but it really was warm enough to strip off.  

The timing was perfect. With the holiday, everything was closed, people were on the last day of the holiday, walking and enjoying the Spring weather. Maximilian Strasse, home to the Hotel Vier Jahreszeiten, is also home to many other impressive buildings. 

And it was not just the humans enjoying the weather - the ducks were out in force as well.  

At every turn, a statue, monument, building or place of interest. A quite phenomenal city.  

And no trip to Munich would be complete without a wander through the historic centre - under the impressive Frauenkirche in Munich.  

And wherever I turned, Germans enjoying the sun. It was time to join them. And where better than a cool and refreshing Weissbier or two at the magnificent Odeonsplatz.

Munich - surely the complete city. 



Photo Blog: Vrboska in the Morning in Early January

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