You may not have seen her right away, but you definitely heard of her. Our colleague Ivana Petrović is a cheerful creative and a skillful marketing specialist ready for action, who after her work in Zubak Grupa turns into a real life artist! Ivana has been making eye-catching colorful jewelry for more than eight years under the unusual name zena.dyete (woman.child), which perfectly describes her eclectic style.
Ivana, how did you start this hobby?
I’ve always had a slightly different style of dressing. At some point in 2014, I made a unique necklace for myself, with people soon caming up and asking me where I bought the necklace, if I could make something like that for them, if I took orders – I was shocked! After that, I knew necklace making would be something I will take up on.
How did the first years of jewelry making go?
I’m a textbook Taurus; stubborn, focused, not listening to those telling me to take on something else. I did my first small photo shoot with the help of a friend, published it on social networks and soon the first orders started pouring in. I was lucky to have always been surrounded by friends who supported me in the earliest stages and who were my first customers. My “breakthrough” happened when influencer Ella Dvornik wore my necklace at an event in 2015. It was covered by the media and I received more orders in one day than I had in the whole previous year!
Where do you find inspiration and motivation after so many years?
I collaborate with influencers, newspapers, photographers and videographers, but I am still a big kid not afraid of breaking out of the norm, handling surprises and improvisation. That’s definition of art in every sense of the word – everything doesn’t have to be named and identified according to a template, you don’t have to immediately put yourself in a proverbial box.
What was your proudest moment in your artistic career?
Uh, there were a lot of them. From women coming up to me in front of a club in New York at 4 am and buying my necklaces, a big feature article in the NY Times, to countless fashion editorials that my necklaces have experienced in America and Europe. I’m most proud when I see random people in the street and online wearing my jewelry.
You recently celebrated 5 years of work in Zubak Grupa. Describe your typical day to us!
I work in the Department of Marketing and Corporate Communications. Our department is well-oiled and always running at full throttle. I create content for all the company’s pages, which suits me perfectly considering that I am a multitasker with at least 10 ideas in my head ready for implementation. In addition to content and social networks, I write texts, organize and host events, and make sure that all our brands are represented in the best possible light and according to our standards. Additionally, for the last year and a half I have also been creating content for the company’s “internal Instagram” – the Jenz application. With my job at Zubak Grupa, I “feed” my internal need to produce large amounts of content, to show the great company atmosphere and high quality work in all segments of our business. Sometimes I spend the whole day filming and taking photos, and sometimes I sit at the computer immersed in Excel sheets. I guess that’s well balanced, yeah?
How does your job help you in making jewelry, and what mistakes would you avoid at the beginning of your career?
I have no regrets, maybe I would be a little less strict with myself, I would overanalyze less and start doing what I really wanted sooner. Whatever you do in life, you should know why you do it. Have a goal, no matter how small and seemingly insignificant it seems to others – don’t go aimlessly through life just because that’s how it’s always been done.
It’s a big myth that artists can’t have a 9-5 job, why is that? I have never put myself in any box, not even one that says that there’s no box. For me, my job provides education and security in other aspects of life. Actually, because of my job at Zubak Grupa, my art is now more secure, more relaxed, I am not so susceptible to trendy pressures and I enjoy every moment of creation.
Any last words?
Believe in yourself, educate yourself as much as you can – both formally and informally. Get to know different cultures, talk to the rich, the poor, the old and the young. Don’t surround yourself only with people similar to you because then you will have the same opinion as everyone else. Try to be as vulnerable as possible to everything, vulnerability is what gives authenticity and what clients appreciate, which is what most people realize only after a certain number of experiences.
Honesty, quality work and authenticity are what our long-term clients at Zubak Grupa value the most. So when you truly live it, then branding something like that is a piece of cake!