This Grating Sound
Colombia, Uganda, USA, Japan, India, Zimbabwe, Finland
Acclaimed project showcasing side-by-side reality in seven different places in the world. Growing up, challenges, opportunities, choices, problems and all the rest, as seen by locals, not tourists, often against popular beliefs. The book “Chrobot” won National Geographic’s Traveler Award for the book of the year. Contact Ms. Ewa Bolinska for international publishing rights (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Polish Special Forces
Poland, Iraq, Afghanistan
Behind-the-scenes world of elite Polish special forces soldiers, their training, missions and aftermath in personal life. Portrayed in ‚Parallel World’ book.
Caribbeans, Florida, New Mexico, Indonesia, South Africa
A project exploring the world of modern-day treasure hunters, both legal and illegal. Tomek worked with the most famous treasure hunting crew in the world, the Mel Fisher Treasures, as well as a legendary hunter of old Spanish desert gold, Tony J. Tucker. He also joined ranks of treasure hunters on the Caribbean Sea, in South Africa and Indonesia. Information collected during this project was exposed in his bestselling book ‘Fever’.
Fundamentalism in Northern Pakistan
Extremism, fundamentalism, sharia law and global risk rise through eyes of common villagers living in Pakistan mountains and on Afghanistan border, places seen to be one of the most dangerous areas in the world. Conclusions: vast difference between media image and reality.
Tatende: Saving the Rhinos
A ten-year-long (and running!) project supporting Imire – a game reserve and black rhino breeding station in Zimbabwe. Rhinos are the most endangered species in Africa, being hunted by professional, ruthless mercenaries for their horns, which are still widely used in Chinese folk ‘medicine’. It is more than a serious matter, as people are being killed in this ‘rhino war’on a regular basis. The fundraiser became a huge success, making it possible for Imire to build anti-poaching fences in the two most vulnerable sectors of the park.
San Quentin Prison
Tomek had an opportunity to spend some time among the prisoners of this maximum security facility for notorious criminals. He focused on relationships between prisoners, including issues of abuse, gang culture, so-called ‘prison code’, rehabilitation programs and the ever-present problem of racism. He looked at these issues from the point of view of both the prisoner and the authorities. The San Quentin Prison visit is a first step to a bigger project, ‘LA Gangs’, which will explore the origins and effects of decades-long mismanagement of racial issues in California.
Baka Communities, Deforestation and Ivory Poaching
Awarded, challenging project focused on changes inflicted by wood industry to isolated Baka communities in Cameroon as well as wildlife in African rainforest. With help of WWF field office in Ngoila, Tomek managed to explore and report important issues regarding nearest future.
‘The Other World’ TV Show
Acclaimed tv show hosted by Tomek for TTV station focused on responsible tourism and social and environmental issues. First series were produced in Thailand, Malaysia, Morocco, Tanzania, Uganda, Bali and Maldives.
Saudi Arabia: Facts and Myths
As one of few European journalists Tomek could travel freely around Saudi Arabia and report social issues, especially women’s rights. His reports focused on dealing with stereotypes popularised by Polish media.
Crime and Violence in Johannesburg
TV documentary on roots of social inequalities and political history leading to continuing violence and crime rise. Ill-famed townships (Alexandra), crime-infested districts (Hillbrow), weapons and drug trade, police and security forces plus oridinary folks, just trying to live day by day among all of this. All presented in non-tabloid, serious approach.
World of muslim mystics, sufis. Members of school of islam outcasted by many radicals. Philosophers, poets, private, mysterious ceremonies and living saints. Or cynics, skilled sellers and crooks, maybe? Or both?
Great project from Sparks NGO, helping kids with cancer. I took one of their patients, Magda Pierzyna to african bush in Zimbabwe, so she could test out her new, „bionic” leg after she had lost her own due to long-lasting cancer problems. It was part of a larger campaign to change legislation and help people battling cancer.
Magic Rituals in Asia
Nepal, India, Laos, Thailand, Malaysia, Hong Kong
An anthropological research project carried out over a few years, focused on those Asian practices that could be called ‘magic’ from a Western point of view. Tomek studied the Zauh law of Akha people and the mythology of Khamu people (Laos), the mysteries of trance and self-inflicted wounding of Ma-Song devotees (Thailand), jadugars (India), techniques of kung-fu masters (Hong Kong) and other aspects of spirituality in the Far East. Lots of dubious evidence of supernatural powers was evaluated by doctors and scientists, although Tomek’s reflections are not fully academic… Some of the information from this project became the basis for the bestselling book ‘Samsara’.
Poachers Gang Bust Operation
Through infiltrating ivory poacher organisational structures in Zimbabwe and Zambia, Tomek gathered information and evidence which resulted in exposing and busting a Zambian-Congolese gang by the Lusaka Police. This story became a chapter in the award-winning book ‘Fever’.
Art Robbers and Smugglers in Cambodia
Siem Reap/Phnom Penh, Cambodia
In cooperation with Heritage Watch organisation, Tomek delved into the underworld market of stolen art, picking up a lead on a gang selling stolen temple sculptures dating to the 12th and 13th centuries.
‘Backpackers’ TV Show
Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore
A TV series showcasing some creative ways to minimize a trip’s budget. It shows how to spend two weeks in SE Asia for less than 650 euros, airfare included!
Las Vegas Cheats
Las Vegas, USA
Tomek managed to gain the trust of some real-life professional card cheats of Las Vegas, working both casinos and other players. He learned from them about their techniques of marking cards, intimidation tricks used on the casino floor against other gamblers, teamwork operations and sleight-of-hand cheats.
USAF Edwards Base
Edwards, Mojave, USA
Series of media stories from NASA and USAF test center. Drones, sonic lasers, hypersonic speed and other ‘Star Wars’ technologies.
Promoting responsible tourism in multiple ways: through coaching, talks with children in schools, meet the author events, at travel festivals, through the books, the blog, during interviews and many more…Tomek works with WWF and Greenpeace.
Muay Thai Bookies
Revealing gambler secrets used while betting on muay thai fights at Bangkok’s two stadiums. Entering rather dark and inhospitable world of Thai-style gambling, which defines reason by being based on faith and use of amulets. This project became a chapter in ‘Samsara’.
Tomek managed to gain access into one of the 29 Maoist guerrilla camps in the far west of Nepal. It is part of a bigger project which will be revealed soon.