Hi, my lovely readers! I’m Natalya – a writer, brand photographer and fashion illustrator with an affinity for design, storytelling and all things elegant.
I was fortunate enough to grow up listening to my father compose beautiful classical pieces on his pianos from the break of dawn till the ungodly hours of the night, and watching my grandfather paint as beautifully as he did, in a shabby little studio situated on the third floor of my grandparents’ townhouse – and like most creative souls, I explored various mediums of art, each of which has been incredibly formative to my career. I grew up dancing ballet at Malta’s only Russian school and playing piano under my father’s disciplined tutorship, which led me to win an award or two prior to entering my teenage years. Yet my greatest love of all was, and will always be, the written word.
I wrote short stories and kept lengthy journals all throughout my childhood, sometimes sending in pieces of writing and poetry to local newspapers for printing. I would draw too, sketching out fashion illustrations on the back of my journals – some of which would come to life through my persistence to create clothing I could never find in Maltese stores. I moved on to design my secondary school’s graduation attire, taking up a course in Fashion Styling and earning my qualification in Fashion Design. The moment I turned 18, I took up a hefty loan, won a scholarship and flew off to Paris to study Fashion Design at France’s top fashion school. My time there only enabled me to realise that patternmaking was my enemy, and my greatest strengths remained to be writing and illustration. After working at Paris Fashion Week and collaborating with other artists, I decided that my studies did not feel artistically stimulating enough yet had managed to deplete my bank account – so I jumped on the next plane to Malta and promised myself I would only proceed with a concrete plan from that day on.
My journey on social media began in 2011, back when I worked on marketing a Tumblr blog I had partially designed. I experimented with all kinds of platforms – from my videography experiments on YouTube, to my ever-growing fascination with Instagram. This website, however, came about in 2016, when a lovely lady from the Malta Fashion Week team contacted me to ask if I would be interested in helping out backstage. I immediately thought of the opportunity to drag my brand new DSLR with me, snap some backstage shots and share them on a website l did not yet own. And so, I contacted some of the island’s top web designers and just like that, in a two-week timeframe, this website came to life.
This site and Instagram have seen me develop a voice and push creative boundaries, and I would say they’ve been a fundamental part of my career’s journey so far, too. I do realise that creating content for one’s own website is often seen as no more than an attempt at influencing, but that could not be further from the truth. My lifetime-long love for content creation led me to share so much of my life online, and introducing this website allowed me to start up a career – all while growing as a writer, photographer and social media aficionada – and form relationships with some of the most artistic islanders I know.
I currently juggle work as a writer, brand photographer and fashion illustrator. That means that in my day to day life, I create visual and written content as well as manage social media channels for high-end brands with an eye for all things refined and sophisticated. In my free time, I’ll collaborate with other creative minds, create content for my personal Instagram/this website and feast on a glass of red wine or two.
I hope you will find this website’s honest writing and themed visuals inspiring in some way or another – and please do reach out if you have read some of my work, even if simply to make acquaintance!