Meet Wayta Patmo, the Photographer Whose Nail Art And Sneaker Collection Are Out Of This World
The photographer talks fashion, beauty, and her bid to make influencing more honest.
Welcome to Favorite Follow, a new series highlighting NYLON's favorite creators and the stories behind some of their most memorable content.
Being a "creative" can mean a lot of things these days — and with social platforms being highly saturated with the self-proclaimed, it can make you wonder who really falls under the creative umbrella and who is just using the label for clout. If one thing is for certain though, Wayta Patmo truly does this.
The photographer, art director, and honest content creator has been sharing pictures of her eccentric fits, out-of-this-world nails, and sneaker selfies since some of the early days of Instagram, showing out her photography skills from the very beginning. Through her truly remarkable creative lens, 35-year old Patmo has worked with some of the biggest brands in pop culture, from Sony Music to Aveeno, and has had her worked featured on Cosmo, Glamour, and Harper's Bazar.
Patmo grew up within the world of fashion and beauty making it an easy passion to fall in love with as well as a career choice. "I don’t think I ever 'got into' fashion. My grandma was a fashion editor for an Indonesian magazine so I kind of grew up with fashion, it was always part of my life," she shared. Her love and appreciation for sneakers emerged differently however — from an early part-time sneaker store job — and has fueled her career like never before.
In the creative and influencer space your work is usually about being the inspiration. As of late, that isn't what it's all about for Patmo. Instead she wants to get your take on her work. "I used to say [the best part of what I do is] inspire people, but now I think the best part of what I do is that I can leave a mark on someones life that wasn't necessarily meant to be there," she explained. " I love that people get creative with what they think my work means."
Ahead, Patmo shares a handful of her favorite Instagram posts — exploring the most important parts of her life, from her hair, her privacy, and growing up in New York City.
On Her Hair Journey
I naturally have a combination of 2B and 3A hair. But I used to relax my hair so much, that my curls started to disappear. With the help of my followers, I revived my waves back to life. I’m still not where I want to be, but my hair made so much progress.
On Keeping Private Moments Sacred
My fiancé is a public figure, so we try to keep 95 percent of our relationship offline and private. We kept our engagement a secret until the end of the year. I feel it’s so important to keep things for yourself, so you can enjoy it. Sharing things on instagram can lead it’s own life, and then your moment isn’t yours anymore.
On Her Sneaker Story
I grew up with hiphop and breakdance culture. But the love for sneakers really grew when i started working at Concrete Store. I learned so much about the artists, the culture and the politics. That companies like Footlocker now hire me to lead the art direction for sneaker campaigns.
On Her Love for New York
I grew up loving everything about New York. So much so, that I moved there after graduating from college. Since then I have tried to go every year. Thank god, I went on a business trip just before Covid. Seeing the city deteriorate because of everything that’s going on there, really breaks my heart. I pray it’ll see better days soon.