In my opinion, nails can showcase class, power, femininity and let’s be honest, it’s the details that make the difference
From delicate pressed flowers to water inspired manicures, 26-year-old Greek nail artist, Maria Vitsa’s designs are unworldly. These are the kind of nails you dream about, that dwell in your imagination.
The nail artist is best recognised for her impressive London Fashion Week 2020 collaboration with fellow Greek designer Di Petsa’s but continues to shine within the creative industry through her many photoshoots with well known Greek stylists and models, including Nassia Matsa.
Maria gives insight into the creative process of these seemingly impossible nail designs whilst highlighting the make-or-break element that a good manicure brings to a fashion editorial and catwalk look.
Can you tell us a bit about yourself and where you grew up?
I am 26 years old, born and raised in Athens, Greece. After I finished high school, I chose to study Fashion Art and Design but I found it unfulfilled me for several reasons so I decided to attend a Nail school.
It felt right from the very first moment, doing nails gave me the creative outlet I was craving. Since then, I’ve been doing nails for almost three years.
One of your proudest career moments?
One of my proudest moments so far was my collaboration with the Greek designer Di Petsa for the fashion film she created for London Fashion Week. Her collection inspired me to create some of my favourite and most original nail designs up to this day.
Where did you hone your craft? Is it something you learnt or is it more instinctual?
I loved drawing and crafts since I was a child so, when I started doing nails in my mind it was the same thing. It was a fun process practising and trying to get better by working by myself, on myself or friends. Working with clients from the very start also helped me hone my craft because I was getting more comfortable and with every repetition of the process it was getting easier until it became instinctual.
What is your creative process and how do you translate someone’s creative vision into nail art?
Most of the times I try to cooperate the references my clients show me with my choice of design and nail art but I always find it important the nail art match the personality and style of each client, I see my clients as my muses, so I always try to bring the end result as close as possible to their vision.
The first step is to decide, always along with my client, if she/he wants to go natural or for some extra length, we decide what nail art we want to do, if we want any. After that, it’s all sculpting and painting. The last and very important part of my process is taking a nice, clear picture of the end result.
How would you describe your aesthetic?
I’m not sure yet that I can describe my own aesthetic but I know for sure that I like my work to come out as bright, fun but clean looking. I really enjoy doing super long nails, but also short ones. I appreciate maximalism but also minimalism. I love really bright colours with lots of hand-painted designs but also clear almost bare acrylics. So, I can’t categorise my style and aesthetic quite yet and, I’m not sure I will be able to in the near future.
Where does your inspiration for the nail designs come from?
I have realised that one of the things that inspire me the most is texture. I love trying to recreate the look of water on a nail, a velvet fabric or something made out of black shinny vinyl. Some of my most asked and popular designs are animal prints, encapsulated dried flowers and a variety of marble and stone designs. I consider all the above nature-inspired themes that seem to be a huge inspiration for fashion over the years too.
My most asked and popular designs are animal prints, encapsulated dried flowers and a variety of marble and stone designs
What should nails bring to a fashion editorial or catwalk show?
Nails are one of the most important “accessories” and they can make a statement and tie an image together as much as an expensive designer’s bag. I think the last few years fashion designers started embracing the power of the statement nail both on runways and editorials. In my opinion, nails can showcase class, power, femininity and let’s be honest, it’s the details that make the difference.
What is your dream project to work on?
I always wanted to work backstage on Savage x Fenty. I love the inclusivity and diversity the brand has to offer as much as the inspiration it provides through the clothes.
However, every project I get to work on is like my dream project. I love my job so much, so at this point, just doing what I do every day and having the freedom to create seems like I’m doing my dream career.
What advice would you give to young artists hoping to get into the industry?
Loving what you do is the most important thing for me, along with practice of course. Sometimes young artists tend to compare themselves and their work with more experienced artists in the industry, that’s something I used to do in the beginning and only led me to disappointment. All of us should try to perfect every step of the process, especially the basic ones which I believe are the most important things of the learning journey.
How has lockdown impacted you and other artists?
We all have to get creative to adapt to the new normal
Due to the Covid-19 situation, things are not as certain as they used to be, so me along with other artists have turned to alternative means to help ourselves and provide an income. Donations, through apps like Buy Me A Coffee, is a way to help us creatives keep doing what we love and relieve some of the anxiety the lockdown has caused us. We all have to get creative to adapt to the new normal.
What nail artists inspire you?
That’s a tough question for me because I can’t include them all in one list. So, I’ll just name a few: @cindywiththegoodnails, @krocaine, @anouskaanastasia, @bhambnails, @nails.bab, @tomonyan55, @nailthoughts and @umanailasrtist.
Maria’s Instagram: @mariavinails
Maria’s nail art has been largely recognised by the fashion community and showcased in; Popsugar, Allure Magazine, Elle France, Stylecaster, The Fashion Spot and in the Instagram accounts of Nailpro Magazine, Scratch Magazine and Marie Claire Brazil.
Buy Me a Coffee is a simple, meaningful way to fund your favourite artist’s creative work: https://www.buymeacoffee.com/Mariavinails