Djakovo on film


By Ante Prskalo

When I first started shooting film, I actually avoided taking photos of the town I live in. I used to believe I would never find anything interesting since I lived there all the time, but in all honesty, I just never took much notice. Chalk it up to disinterest, or just my head up my butt, either is fine with me.

When I finally bothered to look around, I discovered its beauty. One has to look up, and not just stare at the ground ahead.

Djakovo is a small, but beautiful town. It sits right in the middle of the eastern Croatian region called Slavonia, well known for its golden fields of wheat, Lipizzaner horses and good food. People are warm, generous and hospitable.

Sadly, with its community whittled down from around 20,000 to barely 18 000 people today, the town of Djakovo is facing hard times. A lot of the young people have moved to Germany, Ireland and Canada over the past few years in search of a better future. Soon, they took their closest with them.

I can’t say I blame them, but at the same time I can’t help but wonder what is going to become of this town and the community in the future. Is it going to get better? One can only hope. There is so much to see and enjoy here, and if you happen to stumble upon this town or this region, don’t be a stranger. And definitely take your best camera and film with you!

The equipment used for these photos was the following: Praktica MTL5B outfitted with the Pentacon 50mm lens, Nikon F65 with Nikkor 28-100 lens, Zorki 11 and Olympus PEN EE-2. All analogue 35mm cameras, all good in their own way, although I prefer the Praktica by far.

By the way, you will probably notice the iconic Djakovo Cathedral in several photos, which is our landmark and visible from pretty most places in the town. It’s beautiful from the outside, but even more so from the inside. Don’t miss it if you visit.

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As of 2017, I’m also a member of the Djakovo Foto Club:


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