I took a bus from Ankara, Turkey, where I was living, to Plovdiv, Bulgaria once. Why? Why not? I hadn’t met anyone who had been to Plovdiv and didn’t know much about it, so I thought I would go. And, I did. It was a lovely town, really. The old section has some wonderfully restored houses that have been turned into little museums, restaurants or hotels. People were friendly despite the noticeable presence of neo-nazi groups in town who used graffiti to spread their message and could easily pick up white pride shirts, stickers and buttons in a number of stores. That part was weird, I won’t lie to you. But I did like the place.
Plovdiv had a small town feel, was European on the one hand, with strong Ottoman Turkish influences that gave it a Middle Eastern flair on the other. Beautiful mosques and old churches stood side by side in seeming harmony, both treated with a sense of historic reverence. It had it’s rougher edges, too, which gave it character. Corruption and poverty are big issues there and you could see the gap between the rich and the poor, but also a growing middle class who shopped in the main shopping district and hung out at the increasing number of international brand name coffee houses.
It was just a cool place to check out, somewhere I never imagined I would end up, but feel richer for having visited. I wish I had a few more days to spend there to explore, but I feel like that after visiting any place I have been. There is never enough time to experience it all.
Teodor Stoyanov: “Takin’ it easy on a friday afternoon…
This is a short film about the city of Plovdiv, the second largest city in Bulgaria and my home town. Unlike Sofia, (the largest) people here live a calm life and are not in a constant hurry and stress. A perfect place for living and raising children.
This was shot on the central street of Plovdiv in 2 hours, between 6pm and 8pm, the light was perfect for filming. Shot on a Conon 5D Mark II with a Canon 70-200mm f.4 and a cheap photo tripod.
Edited in Sony Vegas 8 Pro”