This article was written by Goran Safarek to boredpanda
The Plitvice Lakes are a natural wonder. Water and rock have worked together to make waterfalls and lakes that are truly amazing. I was lucky enough to see almost every part of the world, from below the surface to high up in the air, in every season. I went to both well-known tourist spots and places that most people don’t go to, like a huge, dense forest that keeps the lakes safe.
Croatia is a small country, but it has a huge range of habitats and species. This ranges from the large floodplains of the Danube and other rivers to the amazing range of habitats and species in the limestone karst landscape and the Adriatic Sea. I’ve been promoting Croatia for years, mostly because of its natural beauty. I also talk about cultural values and eco-tourism.
I went to school to become a biologist. I worked at a university and did research and conservation projects on animals (mostly reptiles and amphibians) all over the world, mostly in the tropics of Africa, Asia, and Latin America. I wrote a number of books about Croatia’s wildlife. I’ve always had my camera with me and taken pictures of the natural world. People want to buy these pictures, and as time has gone on, I have done more and more work as a natural history photographer. I just started making nature documentaries and made a movie called “Rivers of Croatia,” which was shown on a number of European TV channels. I also worked for Nat Geo Wild and the BBC.
When working with animals, this job is always very hard. They are hard to find and hard to predict. It can be hard enough to find them, let alone record their behavior, which is the holy grail. Even to record great landscapes, you need to plan ahead and do it at the right time. But having the picture or video on a camera is a great way to get new ideas.
I started doing aerial photography before drones were everywhere, when I flew in small planes. I try to show people new places or at least new views of places they already know, like the Plitvice Lakes from above or under the water. Even in Croatia, many people don’t know about or haven’t seen these natural treasures.
I like scouting out the places where work will be done the most. Once filming starts, I often stay cold or hot for many hours, sometimes in a small blind. Putting in long hours to get the right shot or video is worth it.
After making the book and movie Rivers of Croatia, I’m going to visit one of the most beautiful rivers in the world as part of my World River project.