Monday, 1 June 2009
STYLIST + DESIGNER OLGA NAIMAN
Oh, wow. That's pretty much all I can say. Wow. The work of Olga Naiman is out of this orbit. You may recognise her name from the good-old Domino days as she was a regular stylist for the magazine. But if she's new to you then you MUST check out her work on her website Aparat because you'll be inspired for hours afterwards.
Which five words best describe you? Seeking wonder and beauty always.
What was your first job and what path have you taken since then? My first job was working at Mrs. Field's Cookies at a big deluxe shopping mall in Boston, Massachusetts when I was 14. We would get free cookies and I'd eat so many I'd want to fall asleep under the cash register desk. The day after college graduation, I packed a minivan and moved to NYC. I landed a job working as an assistant for House Beautiful Magazine and stayed for 5 years, moving up the ladder. I was hankering to live in Europe at the time and move away from realism in design, so I got myself into an MA program at Central St. Martins in London to study site-specific theater design. Since then, I've designed costume + set for theater, designed events, styled magazines, designed furniture. I move within the realm of designing spaces, but it's nice to not be tied to one particular medium. I call it the dim sum of spatial design.
What’s your proudest achievement? Receiving a distinction on my MA course: I was daunted by the colossal breadth of intelligence of my instructor when I first started and managed to hold my own throughout the year and prove myself. The thrill of really feeling like an artist for the first time is unforgettable.
What’s been your best decision? To go freelance and start up a business rather than work for someone else. That way I can sculpt my life and live by my own compass.
Who inspires you? People who have learned the art of balance in their lives. People who dedicate their lives to serving others. It's the art of leading one's life that is forever inspiring to me.
What are you passionate about? My family + friends, creating beauty, inspiring people and bringing them together, the power of community, art + design, love, and living life through the fullness of my heart as often as I can.
What’s the best lesson you’ve learnt? Don't hold back.
Which person, living or dead, would you most like to meet? Joan of Arc: a woman that lived through her conviction and Mother Teresa, a woman who lived through her heart.
What dream do you still want to fulfil? I'd love to live off the grid for a while, make sculpture, grow vegetables in my yard, sink into nature, have babies.
What are you reading? Breaking Open the Head by Daniel Pinchbeck. It's an auto-biographical journey into contemporary shamanism. I am fascinated by all things outside perception.
Images courtesy of Olga Naiman