By Teresa Madeline

Local resident, entrepreneur, illustrator, live-sketcher and self confessed coffee obsessive, Natalia Talkowska has been sketching her way from the eastern side of Europe to the east end of London for several years now. Natalia has brought her unique take on illustration and live mind-mapping to some of the biggest events in the world and also brought her own ideas about creativity as a speaker at Digial Shoreditch 2012. Not just a pretty-faced, wild-haired, ball of creative energy, Natalia speaks of her business Natalka Designs with the spirit of an entrepreneurial warrior, yet despite all of her success she remains humble and modest as if she’s just waiting to be pinched out of her dream career.

Her list of clients couldn’t get much more impressive including the likes of Microsoft, Google, TEDx, Talk Talk, British Network Rail, Hilton and the London Mayor’s Office. Her success is thanks to her unique ability to bring events to life by telling visual stories as they happen by live sketching or animating simple illustrations to create a complex storyboard which, while being visually engaging, encapsulate the key points of an event in the most fun and creative way imaginable.

“I love coffee, I know it’s bad, but I can’t help it there’s so many good coffee places in Shoreditch!”

As a local East Londoner, what are you favourite places to eat, party and get your caffeine fix in the area?

Eat: Breakfast Club, Broadway Market goodies, Market Cafe. Party: Bar Music Hall, Hoxton Bar & Kitchen, Electricity Showroom. Coffee: Oh where do I start?! Bird & Ballard, Shoreditch Grind, Salvation Jane, Pitfield London, The Liberty of Norton, Folgate.

How did it feel to be speaking at such a big event like Digital Shoreditch? 

It was a very vibrant and diverse crowd. I was so excited to open the first day with my ‘Visualise Your Message’ workshop where I was given a chance to engage the audience, have fun and be creative. It felt great to share my ideas and techniques with everyone.

Why did you choose East London to live and work?

I chose it because it has all that I need, especially when running your own business. It’s great being close to the clinical City and disrupting it with my creative visuals, networking opportunities, great working spaces, many interesting events and like-minded driven and creative people. Also because of Regent’s Canal, one of my favourite places and, let’s not forget about the coffee!

What’s the future for Natalka Design?

UNKNOWN! And that’s what’s amazing about it. Since the beginning it’s been going in a direction that our clients wanted to go with. We’ve always been listening to what people want and responding with bespoke services. Recently I heard a quote that really stuck with me, “Dream and don’t ask too many questions, or fear will overcome your feelings.” I truly believe that you can ever plan so much for the future. We are growing, working internationally with amazing clients, the team is getting stronger and better and we are more than excited for the future projects and collaborations!

Can you recommend another rising East London start-up star?

One of the tech start-ups I am a big fan of is City Mapper – these guys helped me and probably many other people to get that late bus back home or be on time for a  meeting when lost in London. You should definitely check them out! |