Matic Borković

Red lights mounted on the frame of a bike create light trails, in a long-exposure image of BMX rider Miha Glavič performing stunts under a bridge. Taken on a Canon EOS R7 by Canon Ambassador Matic Borković.

This photo of BMX rider Miha Glavič was taken at the skatepark under the Fabiani Bridge in Ljubljana, Slovenia, where Matic Borković and his crew were filming a short video to showcase the Canon EOS R7. Matic used a long exposure to create red trails from the LED lights mounted on the bike's frame. The light trails show Miha's trajectory during his stunt. Taken on a Canon EOS R7 with a Canon RF 14-35mm F4L IS USM lens at 3.2 sec, f/11 and ISO 100. © Matic Borković

When Matic Borković first picked up a camera as a teenager, he had no idea the role film would play in his life. Decades later, he is a well-respected creative professional, working across commercials, corporate videos, and also cooperating locally with Canon, giving lectures and helping to represent the brand at the most important events in Slovenia.

As a mentor, he has organised and led the Canon Young People Programme workshops for two consecutive years, resulting in two exhibitions and two short films. "I'm a storyteller," he says. "If you want to be a good storyteller, you need to understand what is best for your client, and the best way to tell the story so that it will resonate with the right audience. You really have to understand how to craft your message in the right way, so the right community hears it."

Born and raised in the Slovenian town of Slovenj Gradec, Matic was exposed to the world of photography from a young age, as his uncle worked as a professional photographer. "I was always interested in technology, and when I was in high school, the influx of digital photography started to happen," he explains. "On every school field trip, I was usually the guy taking photos. I was filling up the quite small-capacity memory cards and draining the batteries!"

Location: Slovenia

Specialist areas: Filmmaking, directing

Favourite kit: Canon EOS C70
Canon FD 55mm f/1.2 SSC Aspherical
 A still from a video, shot by Canon Ambassador Matic Borković for the launch campaign for the Canon EOS RP, showing UV reactive makeup on the face of a model glowing under UV light.

Matic initially did a course in computer engineering, before studying graphic and interactive communications at the University of Ljubljana. But his passion for photography continued to grow while also working as a Canon promoter, and he went professional in 2012. Six years later, he set up his own company, 8Production (pronounced as 'awesome production' in Slovene), which specialises in creating visually stunning motion pictures.

"The progression from photography came naturally because this was the era when social media started," explains Matic. "Compared to other photographers who usually find a genre, stick with it and develop it as a business, I was always striving to get the broadest photography knowledge. For about 10 years, I worked on many film sets as a camera assistant, learning a lot about video along the way. So, my DoP, Klemen Smolar, and I started filming and producing our first commercial films."

Matic was one of the first photographers to try the full-frame mirrorless Canon EOS RP. For the launch campaign in Slovenia, he and his crew created a unique set for a short film (above), which featured a swimming pool filled with about 500 litres of water and 250 litres of tonic to make the water glow under the UV light.

A still from a short film for chef Jure Dretnik, showing a young boy running through the woods, shot on a Canon EOS R by Canon Ambassador Matic Borković.

A still from a short film for chef Jure Dretnik, who took part in the International Institute of Gastronomy, Culture, Arts and Tourism (IGCAT) European Young Chefs competition in 2020. The film, which was shot on a Canon EOS R with a Canon EF 35mm f/1.4L II USM lens, won IGCAT's Food Film Menu, and was praised by jurors as the best visual work created for the festival to date. "It tells a story about the importance of small deeds, of good-hearted people, and the achievements that can be reached by those working together, striving for greater goals," says Matic. © Matic Borković

A still from a video for an eye clinic, showing a model wearing designer glasses against a backdrop of large, circular bokeh. Shot on a Canon EOS C70 by Canon Ambassador Matic Borković.

A still from a commercial for an eye clinic, shot on a Canon EOS C70 with a Canon FD 55mm f/1.2 SSC Aspherical lens. "We came up with the creative from scratch, helping the client to establish its new brand identity," says Matic.

Today, the company works on dynamic and carefully-crafted videos for a range of clients in Slovenia and abroad. As for what's next? Matic has many plans. "Watching production companies that are a few steps ahead of us, the logical step would be to start working with big creative agencies," he says. "But the mutual opinion among my crew is that we'd rather work directly with customers, thus keeping more influence over the creative concepts, and the decision making. This way, we can create films influenced by our own unique identity. We are establishing ourselves as a boutique creative video agency.

"But my main goal is always to have fun doing my job. I have the power to choose what I do, and it's important to me that my work contributes towards a better world. We love to tell the stories that we feel need to be told."

You have worked across a huge range of photography genres. Do you have a favourite?

"As a storyteller, I always try to push for the best story. This usually clashes with good business sense, where you do just enough so that the client is happy, and you get the most money out of it in the least amount of time. For me, it was always important to get to know the wider picture. It is not so much about the field of work – it is about producing amazing work in terms of demonstrating high levels of production. It's important for us to blaze our own trail."

What has been the proudest moment of your career to date?

"I remember the first big business deal I made with a local marketing company. I pushed for more than the client was willing to pay, but I had the right mindset and a good understanding of their needs, and that bigger number came through. The manager took my hand, looked me in the eyes, and said, 'You're a really good negotiator'. From a business perspective, it was a big moment. The other thing I am really proud of is our commercial for a gold and precious metals trading company. It was a great example of mutual cooperation, from the initial creative proposition, to the well-crafted end result. We crafted, pitched and produced an amazing story. The vibe on set was brilliant, and the client was really satisfied with our service."

What's the most valuable lesson you've learnt during your career?

"Early on in my career, there was a local photographer who I really looked up to. It was the new age of photography, the digital era. When I asked him for some advice, he said, 'I paid a lot of money to learn this, so I won't give you advice for free'. Before everything was on the internet, the only way to learn advanced tricks was by paying for courses and learning from professionals. Then and there, I remember deciding that I would try to be different; that I would share my knowledge with others. I am now actively trying to help other people, because I understand what it's like starting out."

What ambitions remain unfulfilled?

"In our collective, we want to tell amazing stories the best way we can. It's about the passion behind the project, and about letting people do their best work. My biggest aim is to link up highly skilled people who have a passion for their work, to give them a bigger platform, and to make sure everyone gets the most out of it."

One thing I know

Matic Borković

"Do your homework. Learn the business side of the photo and video industry, and don't fake it until you make it. I have met many clients over the years who have problems trusting creatives, because they got burned by people overstating their capabilities, charging too much, and then providing substandard work. Always strive for the best – the best for the story. You need a great feel for aesthetics, and a good understanding of your client, the product, the audience, and how to tell that story."


LinkedIn: Matic Borković

Matic Borković's kitbag

The key kit that the pros use to take their photographs

Canon Ambassador Matic Borković's kitbag containing Canon cameras, lenses and accessories.


Canon EOS C70

This RF mount Cinema EOS System camera features Canon's 4K Super 35mm DGO sensor. "Because of the integrated DGO sensor – which is nothing short of amazing – the dynamic range, low light performance and colours are just epic," says Matic. "The quality surprises us again and again. The integrated ND filters save so much time – having that ability at the press of a button is just great."

Canon EOS 5

This analogue film camera was the world's first 35mm SLR camera with eye-controlled focus. "This is such an important camera for me; it brought me back to photography and I fell in love with taking photos again," says Matic. "Film forces you to slow down and think about the shot you are about to take. This camera has retaught me so many lessons about the importance of storytelling, composition, and my approach to creative work. It helps me to be better."


Canon RF 28-70mm F2L USM

A super-fast and bright 28-70mm f/2 L-series lens, giving stunning results, even in low light. "This lens is a technological marvel," says Matic. "Its technical excellence means we mostly use it for interviews, events and run-and-gun work. If an on-set assignment includes still photos, this is my go-to lens. It covers the most important focal lengths, and delivers exceptional crisp and detailed photos every time."

Canon EF 35mm f/1.4L II USM

This lens is favoured for its natural perspective, low-light capability and extraordinary optical performance. "For me, 35mm on a full-frame sensor is one of the best focal lengths," says Matic. "Being able to capture really wide scenes while still getting just the right amount of background blur has helped me to capture some of the best photos of my career."

Canon FD 55mm f/1.2 SSC Aspherical

"Since the adoption of mirrorless cameras, I've been collecting vintage Canon FD lenses," says Matic. "We try to implement a fresh, unexpected and unique way of storytelling into our work, complementing that with a carefully crafted visual look that can be greatly enriched using vintage and special lenses. This gem stands out for its optical characteristics."


Canon Mount Adapter EF-EOS R 0.71x

An EF to RF adapter which allows a broad range of Canon EF lenses to be used on the EOS C70. "This is an absolute must-have," says Matic. "It gives you a full-frame field of view when using EF lenses, and adds a stop of light to your existing aperture. It means we can use our existing line-up of Canon EF lenses with the EOS C70."

Generic FD and PL to EOS R adapters

"Often clients request a specific look that can only be achieved using vintage glass, so these adapters are essential," says Matic. "For art projects, we tend to opt for Canon FD lenses, which combine a pleasant, creamy look with great optical and mechanical properties."

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