Damir Plavotić - Wedding Photographer from Croatia
Hi Folks! My name is Damir and I am a destination wedding photographer from Croatia. My goal is to create photos that capture those perfect, once-in-a-lifetime moments as they happen – beautiful and spontaneous. The idea is not just about wedding photography. It is about preserving those precious fragments of your life for all eternity.
A Few Things About Me
I’m a husband and father. Born on Saint Nicholas’ Day. I live in Rijeka, a city in the Croatian coastline. I love to take long walks with my headphones on. I laugh at Flight of the Conchords, I watch Black Mirror, rock out to Arctic Monkeys and I play the drums. I enjoy spicy food. All my shoes are Vans. All of them. I don’t own a TV. If I ever win the lottery – I will go to space!
Now, what has all this got to do with me being a wedding photographer?
Bear with me now… I could probably come up with an explanation why I prefer those specific things over others. But it all comes down to this. With music, art and almost everything else in my life, some things speak to me, while others don’t. I learned how to avoid overthinking the reasons behind my decisions, and instead, just follow my instincts. Sometimes in life you have to brainstorm things, make a list of pros and cons and go with the option that has more pros than cons. And it still doesn’t guarantee a good choice. Instinct, on the other hand, has never let me down.
“Photography for me is not looking, it’s feeling. If you can’t feel what you’re looking at, then you’re never going to get others to feel anything when they look at your pictures.” — Don McCullin
When I’m working as a destination wedding photographer, I rely on the same instincts. Out of an infinite number of scenes and frames that can be photographed during a wedding, I shoot only the ones that I feel with my gut. I capture only the scenes that speak to me. And the results always confirm this rule of mine. The photos are always true, authentic. Sure, I could come up with an elaborate explanation for every photo I have ever taken – the technical details of the shot, and the contextual reasoning behind it – the uniqueness of the particular couple, or the specifics of the wedding venue, the details in the photo. But that kind of reasonable explanation can only be done in hindsight. There is no time to go through that entire process when the moment comes when I need to capture a scene that is gone in a blink of an eye. Something happens then, an instinctive mechanism turns on and I just follow my gut feeling and do it. And there is a good reason I feel those moments during weddings, but we’ll get back to that…
Why choose me as your wedding photographer?
Weddings are special events. You celebrate birthdays and anniversaries every year. But you only get one shot to do a wedding. And although details such as the type of ceremony, traditional elements, music selection, wedding venue etc. play a huge role, there is something infinitely more important than that. It is the couple – the bride and the groom. And their special, one-of-a-kind relationship. That is the most important thing to capture in wedding photography, but also the most difficult. And you only get one chance to do it. It is all about the special details. The looks the loved ones exchange, the holding of the hands, the gentle nuances that are different for every couple. You can have the photos of all the guests and the decorative details of the wedding, even the photos of the wedding couple posing, but if you miss that special connection between the bride and the groom that happens spontaneously, those unscripted moments when the real union forms – you missed the essence of the wedding.
“Photography is the simultaneous recognition, in a fraction of a second, of the significance of an event.”—Henri Cartier-Bresson
For every professional wedding photographer it is important to know how to recognize those essential moments. My experience in street style and documentary photography has taught me how to recognize those moments and how to photograph people without them noticing. That way I manage to make a portrait of who they are, not take a snapshot of what they look like. And there is another thing that helps me shoot a couple getting married. I know what marriage is about. It is not because I am psychic. It is because I am married.
I met my wife, Antonija, in a punk rock concert. It was again one of those special moments. I didn’t try to rationalize it, I knew, instinctively, that she was the one. Today, Antonija and I have a five year old dynamo of a daughter, Kiara, who turns every situation into a Monty Python sketch. My happiness is not a product of a logic-based decision making. I just followed my instinct and my heart. You see, sometimes, making life-defining choices is like taking a perfect photo – it is the simultaneous recognition, in a fraction of a second, of the significance of an event. You can check out some of the Croatia wedding photos, destination wedding galleries or a selection of my best work on my Portfolio page. If you have any comments, suggestions or questions, I would love to read them – please feel free to contact me via Instagram profile, Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, Flickr, Google+ or complete the form on my contact page. Thank you!