This month we are happy to introduce you to – one of my closest – boss lady Wayta Patmo. She’s more than just a photographer and creative director. Read for yourself! | @teamwayta

Tell us more about who Wayta is?

I’m a feisty woman who acts way taller than she is. I live for soft and warm colors. I can’t live without visiting the sun twice a year, but I’m a homebody at heart. I’m a visual artist creating art and content for companies and magazines with photography, fashion direction and art direction.

How old are you?

33, but everyone thinks I’m 25 for some reason

Where are you from?

I was born in The Netherlands. I love living here, but it’s definitely not my only home. I’m half Surinamese, half Indonesian. Both countries are such a dream, if I have enough money, I’d love to buy a house in both countries.

When did you start with photography?

I actually started taking pictures with my dad’s camera when I was really little. But I started pursuing it as a serious profession around 21.

What was the biggest lesson in your career?

In the beginning of my career I’ve been super naïve about intentions and how creatives are treated. I think my biggest lesson was to see myself of a certain value, before I started any collaboration.

We know that you lived in New York for a while. How did you experience this?

In the beginning it was like living a dream. Everybody wanted a piece of me. I just graduated, so I couldn’t have imagined the start of my career better than this. But New York is unforgivable and fast, and hard. I’ve lived there for a year, but I didn’t do anything a tourist would do, there were NO off days. I still miss the city, but I wouldn’t want to live there again.

What has been your biggest fail during your career?

I wouldn’t say I have 1 big fail. But I think the most common thing is companies telling me, they want me on board, but they don’t have the budget. But if that certain campaign goes well, they will ‘pay me for a next one’. I’ve heard that so many times, I can’t even count them anymore. And spoiler alert: they still don’t have the budget.

Have you seen changes in the industry in those years?

Yes! It’s so nice that we see so much diversity in skin color, shape and gender. I have always been fighting for this. Even though it’s still in the beginning stages if you look at the bigger titles and companies, I’m still very positive about the future.

Is there anything that you would change in the fashion industry? And why?

I would like the snobbishness to end. The whole “you can’t sit with us” energy. Or the “if you don’t wear this, or you don’t know this designer you’re not cool” is just all very boring to me. We are all in this business to create, inspire and to learn. No need to have an attitude about it or to exclude people from the conversation.

You been in the industry for many years now. What was your first project?

My first commercial job was for Puma. I was still in school, but I already had my company on the side. It was a guerilla campaign where I had to follow “beamerman” projecting the campaign video at all these different locations, it was really fun!

What was the biggest lesson in your career?

In the beginning of my career I’ve been super naïve about intentions and how creatives are treated. I think my biggest lesson was to see myself of a certain value, before I started any collaboration.

We know that you lived in New York for a while. How did you experience this?

In the beginning it was like living a dream. Everybody wanted a piece of me. I just graduated, so I couldn’t have imagined the start of my career better than this. But New York is unforgivable and fast, and hard. I’ve lived there for a year, but I didn’t do anything a tourist would do, there were NO off days. I still miss the city, but I wouldn’t want to live there again.

What has been your biggest fail during your career?

I wouldn’t say I have 1 big fail. But I think the most common thing is companies telling me, they want me on board, but they don’t have the budget. But íf that certain campaign goes well, they will ‘pay me for a next one’. I’ve heard that so many times, I can’t even count them anymore. And spoiler alert…they still don’t have the budget.

Have you seen changes in the industry in those years?

Yes! It’s so nice that we see so much diversity in skin color, shape and gender. I have always been fighting for this. Even though it’s still in the beginning stages if you look at the bigger titles and companies, I’m still very positive about the future.

Are there other creatives or artists who inspire you? If yes, who would you love to work with?

Oh there’s a lot. I try not to focus too much on specific people, because I learned it blocks my creativity. But Vivanne Sassen is my all time favorite. I would love to create with everyone that’s on the same creative or spiritual level as I am. I think we can jump on the same wave and create something really beautiful.

Does social media affect or add to your work?

I wish it wouldn’t as much as it does. I try to have social media timed in my day, so I won’t look as much as I do because it’s more of a distraction than something that makes me productive. On the other hand, it definitely adds to my work as well, I’ve never thought that creation content for brands, using my own face, was something I would ever enjoy. But social media played a big role in that.

If you weren’t a photographer what kind of job would you do?

I haven’t been focusing on being a photographer for a while now. I just ride the wave, and see where it takes me. Sometimes that means photography, but I also do art direction, consultancy, creative direction, fashion, styling and I even sing sometimes. I think being a creative centipede works best for me.

Do your roots inspire you in the things you do?

Yes, I take my roots with me in everything I do. I try to implement my roots in as many commercial work as possible. I think it’s very important my people have a good representation of their culture, and people to look up to. I think that everyone that works in image, fashion or entertainment should do that as well.That’s why I started a new video platform together with Celmatique and Hashtagbylily called “Crazy Dutch Asians” to be represent our culture but also learn from other Asian cultures as well. I think fear and racism can all die when you feel connected and understood. So hopefully we can part of the change.

Which brands would we find in your closet?

Stella McCartney, Balenciaga, Y/Project, Edun, Nike, Adidas, Puma

What advice would you give other people who want to be creative with their social media?

I think it’s important you know what you want to communicate. Use your voice, image or following for something you’re passionate about. And don’t be afraid to be vulnerable, honest or unpopular.

If we had to live without the power of having social media. How would you express your creativity?

I’m an elderly millennial. So I know all about live without social media. There was way less judgement, way less beef and way less being “insta-ready” all the time. So I don’t think I would change anything about my creative expression. I would just call my friends more I guess.

Last but not least, why do you think you’ve been approached for Celmatique Style?

I think my style and job is not necessarily something you see everyday. It takes thick skin and a lot of work, inside and out. I think Celmatique is a platform for people who don’t like to think, dress or work like a regular person. So with me and my lifestyle, I think you’re at the right address.

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