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INTERVIEWS

AT HOME WITH:
IVANA MARTYN-ZYZNIKOW

AN INTERVIEW BY HOUSE OF BIMBI

FEBRUARY 14TH, 2024
WORDS BY: HOUSE OF BIMBI & IVANA MARTYN-ZYZNIKOW
IMAGES: IVANA MARTYN-ZYZNIKOW

AROUND THE TABLE | IN COMPANY WITH IVANA MARTYN-ZYZNIKOW | HOUSE OF BIMBI

INTERVIEWS

AT HOME WITH
IVANA MARTYN-ZYZNIKOW

AN INTERVIEW BY HOUSE OF BIMBI

MARCH 25TH, 2024
WORDS BY: HOUSE OF BIMBI & IVANA MARTYN-ZYZNIKOW
IMAGES: IVANA MARTYN-ZYZNIKOW

For the first edition of House of Bimbi's At Home series, we spoke to the ever-incredible Ivana Martyn-Zyznikow, photographer and mother of three, discussing the balancing act of parenthood alongside a career and the impact community makes on raising a family.

Ivana, we're so inspired by the incredible content you create as a standout photographer within Australia's fashion industry, but most of all, we love the captivating and inspiring content shot of your beautiful family, it often feels so raw

Being in an industry that works with families, we know how comical a shoot day can be with young children. First and foremost, how chaotic is this for you, or does your family simply make for easy-to-shoot talent?

This definitely can be hard! Initially, our eldest, Winston, didn’t like being in the photographs – we would turn down big commissions because we knew he wouldn’t want to be involved, or Viv, our second child, would be in the photos instead. But over time, he would notice that he wasn’t in any of the photos, and would ask where he was. So, once he realised that he became more excited… now, if I’m setting up the studio for a job, he’ll be asking to watch and eagerly ask to be in the photos himself.

I would never make them, so we just waited until they were actually wanting to join in themselves. It’s still hard, but I think the best part is capturing the moment.

SPEAKING OF YOUR INCREDIBLE CAREER–OUR FOUNDERS BEING WORKING PARENTS THEMSELVES–WE'RE PASSIONATE, AS A BRAND, ABOUT SUPPORTING PARENTS WHO JUGGLE THEIR CAREERS WHILE MANAGING LIFE AT HOME.

BEING A SOUGHT-AFTER PHOTOGRAPHER, DO YOU TRAVEL MUCH? HOW DOES HOME LIFE LOOK FOR YOU WHEN YOU HAVE A BUSY SCHEDULE?

Travelling back & forth from Melbourne to Sydney on such a regular basis, I made sure to have a nanny in both cities.

While Tim, my partner, is home he has his hands full with our renovations and can sometimes find it tricky making all of the kids' meals depending on what’s on. So we have babysitters in the two states to help with the process. Logistically, it’s quite hard… and exceptionally exhausting, but I feel it’s worth it to stay relevant and I love what I do. I have taken a small step back from the level of work I take on just while breastfeeding, so I will continue to keep it up when I can eventually leave Rupert at home in Melbourne.

We do find that a vast majority of the income goes to upkeeping the family.

Oh definitely. We find this too, and three has really tipped the scales. But it’s also really beautiful at the same time and I love it. I mean, Rupert is almost 9 months, so we’re also coming up to the part where life is starting to get easier again.

You recently moved to the coast, mid-renovations, how has this move to Balnarring been? How is Tim doing with the renovation project?

Moving to Balnarring has been the best decision for our family.

The renovation process has been hard… initially, Tim would drive down each weekend or throughout the week, and we would stay in the city, so we thought it would be easier once we had moved in and were all together. So, we’re always taking turns to give each other time to work, and I’ll get out of the house with the kids for a while so he can get a particular job on the house done, but of course, we make it work.

Plus, the lifestyle here is so much more lenient than in the city. We moved at Christmas time, and it honestly has been the best thing we ever did. We didn’t have a shower for the first month after moving in, so we just had baths every day. I feel like anyone who has built or renovated would know how many things can go wrong or be delayed, it’s hilarious. But definitely difficult.

We have a wonderful supportive network here and we feel more connected as a family because of it. Being in a smaller community has special elements that remind me of my own childhood and everyone is so helpful. People help you with your groceries and the kids love school more than ever.

PICTURED | Life at home amid renovations - Ivana WITH RUPERT & WINSTON

LAST YEAR, YOU WELCOMED A PERFECT NEW MEMBER TO THE FAMILY! RUPERT IS PRECIOUS. HOW HAS THE TRANSITION BEEN FOR VIV & WINSTON WITH A NEW ADDITION TO YOUR FAMILY?

Winston our oldest adores Rupert, I don’t even get a look in anymore. He is obsessed with his little brother. Vivian is still transitioning, he’s starting to play with him now, but he has taken his time. He’s probably become more needy, but all in all, they’ve been great.

IT’S A JUGGLING ACT OF TRYING TO GIVE EVERYONE YOUR TIME. JUST ONE FOOT IN FRONT OF THE OTHER.

What advice might you give to other working parents who are juggling family and work life?

Get a good nanny! I actually have the most amazing babysitter, she was a game-changer in my life. She did more than just look after the kids, she would help make beds and do the washing… when I’d come home from a job the house would be looking beautiful, it was such a big help and would allow me to feel more organised. She’s actually just fell pregnant, which is so wonderful for her, but sad for us haha

Getting help was pivotal – it really does take a village to raise children, so I think as many hands as you can get... it makes all the difference.

You have to learn to relinquish control. It can be easy to feel controlled about what your children can or can't have–for instance, I didn't want our kids to have sugar while they were young–but you have to pick your battles. If someone is there to help us, that’s what matters… it’s important to acknowledge they might do things differently, but that’s how it’s going to be, so it helps to accept that and even allow the help in the first place.

We completely agree. It almost has to be, “out of sight out of mind.” If a grandparent is going to give them sugar, we have to let it go. As you said, their time and support is what is most important.

We were interested in whether entering motherhood has shaped your creative eye in any way. Have you found your creative approach changed since becoming a mother?

That’s a hard one – I actually became a full-time photographer in the same year that I became a mother, so I can’t say. 2018 was the year Winston was born, and at that time I decided to stop modelling and remove myself, so photography became my sole income.

I do know, however, that having more children has probably changed my approach ever so slightly – I definitely photograph children more.

We didn’t realise that all happened around the same time for you, what an amazing transition into motherhood.

Before becoming a parent, or throughout the parenthood journey, what was the best advice and worst advice any person might have given you?

I guess, there’s a lot of talk that you won’t notice three, and of course, it’s different for everyone, but it’s another ball game. Every second someone else wants you, your mind is constantly occupied.

I don’t know about the advice, but three definitely makes a big difference. Each to their own, but you do only have two arms.

What has motherhood taught you about yourself?

That I love being a mother. You are taught to be more selfless… and it is through this learning that has made me a better version of myself and brought me so much joy.

I think, it has also made me more aware of the importance of community and the support of other mothers to help you on this journey of parenthood.

PICTURED |  WINSTON SITTING ON THE KITCHEN BENCH IN THEIR FAMILY HOME | HOUSE OF BIMBI EXCLUSIVE

If you had one full day of complete alone time, what you do and why?

Oh, I would probably try and sleep if I can – although I did go and get a facial recently and it was just wonderful. So perhaps, if I had a full day to myself, just to go and just be pampered and relax.

For my 40th, I actually asked my fiance for a sleep-in once a week. No present, just a sleep-in each week, so now each Sunday morning, even though I’m the one who wakes up first, he gets up and takes care of the kids so I can go back to bed for as long as I feel like.

So, that’s been my one thing that I’ve asked for myself, which has been absolutely amazing. I miss the sleep-ins. At the moment my littlest, Rupert, does not sleep. He’s not a sleeper and is up all night long, so I can’t wait to wean him – but he’s just so gorgeous.

We find it so important to highlight and join in celebrating the ride that is parenthood, and speaking with wonderful mothers, fathers, grandparents, guardians, and industry experts is exactly what we love doing.

Thank you for your time, especially as you’re busy getting your family ready for the beach while we squeeze in this wonderful call. We look forward to a valuable, ongoing relationship together.

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View the full 'In Company With Ivana Martyn-Zyznikow' gallery. Exclusive to House of Bimbi.

VIEW THE GALLERY

You can follow Ivana & her work @ivanamartynzyznikow | www.studioimz.com

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