New approach to theater photography

For last two months I’ve been working with director from Prijedor city theater Darko Cvijetic on a new play called “Phoenician women, materials”. It is experimental kind of play at least for Prijedor’s theater. It is a concept, without predefined monologues or dialogues. Play about women, suffered from war (any war) and by its aftermaths. Five stories about women who have lost a brother, who were raped, who gave birth to a warrior, who  played for a soldiers, who are searching for a grave, who are waiting in vain…

“Phoenician women” by Euripides was taken just as a idea not as a background. But if you search just a little bit about Theban war and stories about king Oedipus you will find out that no war is different no matter if it is some mythical ancient war or some modern Bosnian, Syrian, Ukrainian or who knows which war.

Here in Bosnia, even 20 years after the war, people are still unsettled and restless. PTSD is in its full potential and no category is exempt. We are society of destroyed marriages, youth grown up without fathers, abandoned children. Violence on women and children is more present then ever. And many wounds are still unhealed… But nobody is taking care about it. It is like a taboo in a society burdened by national identity, criminal privatization, stale democracy and trash culture.

My series of five portraits “Theban women” started as a side project but became a significant part of a story and visualisation of a play itself.

This is my ode to women:

Phoenician women_Wife-7

For a play itself, I made 5 photo essays or 5 photo stories trying to correspond with each story but not in an obvious way. My storytelling is not narrative and banal. My intention was not to show anything that actress will already do or say but to amplify emotions. It is hard to paraphrase the play. Hopefully, in a few days, there will be a full video of “Phoenician women, materials” online and I will be able  to post a link here so you could see for yourself.

Here are my photo-essays. Each video is minute and few seconds long.

All portraits and all images in photo essays are made with Fujifilm XPro1 camera and XF35mm f1.4 lens.

Sketches of Iron and Dust

This is a story (sketches from stories) that I was preparing for a Fotopub Festival in Slovenia on which unfortunately I didn’t go. I left this story aside but few weeks ago, I decided to finish it.

I was inspired by Mike, Rebecca and Borut and realized that photofilms are something where I can exploit myself full time. As I’m professional musician, expression of sound is something very familiar to me. Combining photography with sound is something I found to be close to me and hopefully you will see it and hear it too.

Long story – short – Ljubija is a small town in north western part of Bosnia. Once cultural and social center of region, strongly dependable of nearby iron mine. Once iron was exploited – Ljubija was left and forgotten. Those are sketches and emotions of Ljubija inhabitants – Cicko, Bodo and Mladen.

Photography – Igor Motl

Original music – Igor Motl

Edit and production – Igor Motl

5am book by Borut Peterlin

Borut Peterlin – Slovenian photographer has a new book called 5am which is possible to purchase over I know Borut for some time and we were discussing about his 5am project for few times and I saw just a small amount of pictures that he took on his long term personal project. It was just hard for me to visualize it as a concept but right now, after I saw his book (not real book but over Blurb and his web site here – and I will buy this book for sure) I’m amazed of how powerful it really is.

He captured that strange time of night/day with mixture of humor, empathy and with a great sense for dramatization. Well done Borut!!!


Click on image to view 5am gallery on Borut’s web site.

CLICK HERE to buy his book over Blurb

Blurb book review

Just a few days ago, I finally got my book I ordered over Blurb. It is printed photo story about SAMARICE I did two months ago.
Here are some thoughts about quality and service from Blurb.
First of all, you need to download their software Blurb Booksmart (just a few MB and really easy to use) that is your main tool in designing and uploading your photos on their server. Only bad thing about that kind of service is that they will print what ever you send to them, so be careful when creating a book.
I’m pretty much satisfied whit copy I’ve got. I choose their biggest format (large format landscape 33×28 cm or 13×11 inches), hard cover with dust jacket and premium quality paper (price difference was very small between standard and premium paper). Options were to have hard cover with image wrap but I decided no to do that because few posts on Blurb forum and because some practical experience from other photographers (look here). If you decide to order from Blurb, don’t be lazy and go read their forum a bit. Lot of useful informations from direct users of Blurb services.
Here are some pictures of my book:






Paper is thick, with silky finish (not sure about the weight – on Blurb site there is information that it weight 100 lbs). Binding looks solid and clean and durable.


Print quality is over my expectations. I went (before I ordered from Blurb) to several printerhouses and ask them to make me some samples with my photos. Each of them are using digital printers and the result was similar from every one. Photos had some magenta-ish tone, contrast was good but separation of black color was bad and nasty. Only thing that I liked was a tip from a printer guy who told me to turn off ICC profile when saving a jpg version of a picture.
Here is some magnifications of one page so you can see the quality:



Here is the page I used for magnification (right side)

Great thing about their service is that your book goes immediately to Blurb Bookstore where anybody can buy your book by the price you set for it. Also there is an competition Photography Book Now where you can apply with your Blurb book.
Bad thing about Blurb is that they don’t ship to Bosnia so I had to ask my friend from Slovenia to use his address and he sent me my book after he got it. Thx Borut again!!!
There are many similar service sites as Blur with different options, prices, etc.
Such as Asuka books (quality and expensive)

forest lords
By Igor Motl