KODAK Maroc Bali

This was my 

“dream job”


An award winning campaign for a major client with locations in different counties.

Jürgen, the AD had lots of marvelous tales and to start with, we produced the “Caravan Story” in Morocco.





Flying to Marrakech, then by car crossing the High Atlas mountains in the snow, I travelled further south to Zagora to find, well, the – “desert look” – we wanted.

I had to send the location shots via courier back to Germany and then wait for the final OK.

Next on the agenda was to find the talents, along with their camels. Now they’re not the sort of folk you find around the corner.

Finally, I spotted them, their nearest camp 60km away. However hard we tried, they rejected the offer to collect them with a truck. All we could get from them was a promise to show up at the right place on time. This “loose” arrangement made me mighty nervous but then I was so relieved to see them arrive at the first crack of dawn on the day of the shoot.

Erecting the frame was the other big challenge. It had to come from Frankfurt, Germany via Spain and the Algeciras-Tangier ferry on a 4wheel drive VW-van. Somehow, our driver managed to bring the huge rooftop box through customs and all the way south, and arrived almost on time.

Without mobile communication available this was pretty nerve-racking for the whole crew.

But, as always, we made it happen and had a perfect day for the shooting.

Retouching was not an option before Photoshop, so everything had to be done in one shot.

Zagora Hotel switch board.


It took me a week of scouting to find the best location from the hundreds of temples we had to choose from. Not only the location and the orientation had to match, the head of the village and the priest had to give their consent and then ask the Gods for theirs.

After I sent the location pictures and waited for a reply, the next task was to look for the cast. In the capital Denpasar is a famous traditional Balinese school, for theatre, dance and music. These people were just amazingly helpful in putting together the whole show: dancers, costumes and music. We had to have a real Gamelan orchestra with us, otherwise it would have been impossible to do it.

The decision was made and we wanted to shoot about a one-hour drive away in Banjar.

This time the frame came by plane and after photographer Boudewijn Neuteboom found the best angle, it was set up by men of the village who cut bamboo near the location to support the frame and dug it in perfectly in front of the temple. Actually, you can still see the bamboo in the final add underneath the frame. Remember these were pre-Photoshop times.

The crew, talents and music had to be in Banjar well ahead of the shoot to allow time for the dancers to be made-up and dressed. The whole village came to watch and enjoy the event. And they had a lot to see, as we had to return for four days because of the weather condition, since we needed the sun. It was only on the morning, of the day we departed that we finally got the perfect shot.

This was the first photo shoot with live music that I produced. The next one was in 2013 in Moscow.

Read about this project, in German, in this reportage from COLOR FOTO Magazin 6/89