Natalia Kindler honed her PR and communications career at one of Sydney’s leading agencies before realising a harmonious connection within her husband’s well-established photography and film production business. Now as the co-founder and managing director of dualism and dualism studio, X-Files speaks to Kindler about the necessity of daring changes, working with your partner and her wellness perspective as a certified yogi.
Tell us about your formative PR years and career background.
I started full time work at 19 eager to progress in my career whilst I finished studying my Bachelor of Business degree part time at UTS Sydney. A career starting in finance at AMP became a great training ground to develop fundamental skills I still carry with me today. After a hiatus of living in Hawaii at 21 to complete my studies full time, I returned to Sydney and landed a job at Seven Network in advertising (this is also when I met Tim, my now husband!). It was here I was exposed to 360 marketing integration across all platforms which is integral to the work I do today with agencies and direct to brand.
I then worked in marketing at Ticketek before getting into PR agency land, which is where I really honed my branding skills, specifically in luxury working with some incredible brands. I’ve worked in-house and I’ve worked agency; I’ve worked with national brands (emerging and established), as well as global leaders. This diverse discipline of marketing and communications has placed me in great stead in owning a production company with my husband to create authentic content that resonates for global brands.
What are your fondest professional milestones in your 10 years in PR?
In PR you work on some pretty wild and wonderful concepts, intended to inspire beyond your targeted audience. There were many sensational moments I was a part of, from working with the likes of Maserati and Tiffany & Co. to celebrities like Olivia Palermo. Fortunately, I am lucky enough to still work with some of my previous clients creating content in our production company.
I think what has touched me the most is the people – clients, colleagues and mentors that have formed into many beautiful friendships with like-minded people I still remain in close contact with today.
What insights can you share for the 'next gen' of entrepreneurial seekers?
I have realised you can be whoever and whatever you want to be if you dare to do so. In a lot of the personal wellness work I have done, I have realised I only have ever been in my own way, and peeling off those layers and working through your fears and doubts is all part of the journey to enable yourself to shine.
If it were easy everyone would be a business owner. The process of growth is the most liberating thing you can do for yourself if it is something you seek. You will evolve in ways you never thought possible, and ultimately it is rewarding, fulfilling and liberating.
In my view if you listen to what feels right in your body you cannot go wrong.
Talk us through your work with your husband, Tim Kindler. How do your roles contrast?
Tim is an excellent, multi-talented creative that is profoundly technically literate. He has such an artistic eye and his roots are in photography. Early in his career he worked in the film industry, and now as a Director in Film, one of his greatest differentiators is his photographic eye. Tim has a rare multi-talent of being skilled through the entire production line – from conception through to post. This has enabled him to run a successful production company for 10 years prior to my joining, as well as lead our creative artists, maintaining a high production standard we pride our work on.
I, on the other hand, am strategic and business minded, and also creative in other (non-technical) ways like being idea orientated and holding a curated eye for what will work and resonate from a brand to consumer perspective. So we are really yin and yang, complimenting opposites.
Given my background, I have been in charge of our restructure and re-brand, leading the development of our company and working with clients in the orientation phase to ensure the production and our creative process meets their brand needs. This is the growth area for our business – how production and the creative process can intersect to meet brand needs to authentically resonate with their targeted audience, in an artistic and cinematic way.
Natalia wears Maison Margiela Oversized Graphic T-Shirt, Paco Rabanne Asymmetric Ruched Skirt, Saint Laurent Amber Sandal and Valentino Rockstud Envelope Pouch from Parlour X. Images courtesy of Tim Kindler from dualism.
How did you identify there was an opportunity to blend your working worlds?
As a couple we naturally talked about our work. In more recent years it became very clear how interconnected our worlds were becoming. With the rise of social and brands going beyond published media to curate their own brand story, content needs have become pivotal to any brand.
I was constantly creating content in PR as a communications medium for the brands I led in the Australian market so it was almost, why had we not done this sooner?! Tim always encouraged me to consider my own business because he really felt I would thrive as an entrepreneur, but fear and the thought of the instability is what really got in my way, so I perpetually passed up on the idea until I had such a personal urge for growth and evolution I just could not escape. I had to change something and it seemed the perfect lifestyle and professional choice.
Was this an effortless transition?
It took me about 5-6 months to find my feet. I also made the transition in a staggered approach contracting in communications on the side which I soon realised was not the formula to progress. I had to go all in, facing all the discomforts and barriers I had laid out for myself to allow me to enter this space. Now on the other side, I feel more motivated and liberated than ever, realising the choice is in my hands to carve the path for my future. I am also working in the background on my own project in the health and wellness space – a cause close to my heart.
Tell us about the core philosophy and history behind dualism – the film and photography production company you co-founded with your husband Tim Kindler. What type of services do you provide?
The philosophy of dualism is the notion commerce and creativity are both distinct and inseparable.
dualism intersects modern production with a holistic understanding of brand offering end-to-end services across film and photography. dualism is our commercial division – offering commercial grade production in advertising and branded content. dualism studio is our boutique production studio, serving modern day digital and social content needs that are more transient and require modest production.
Our foundational theory is powerfully simple – that brand and creative are indivisible. Crafting beyond an idea, dualism exists to deliver artful, cinematic work with substance and authenticity. It is here creative and commerce combine to produce meaningful content.
Images courtesy of Tim Kindler from dualism.
How did you fall into yoga and what has the practice taught you?
Yoga is my love. I fell into it by complete accident 5 years ago. I had tried yoga many times previously and never connected to it. When the student is ready the teacher appears.
Yoga has taught me so much, in particular the yoga teaching training I undertook in 2018 to develop my own yoga practice. The teachings and philosophy of yoga are really tools for life. It has little to do with the asana (the physical practice of yoga). They say yoga begins when you step off your mat because it is a state of mind; an introspection, connection and conversation with yourself.
It taught me how to align my body, mind and my soul, and I have met the most wonderful, soulful people that I never would have crossed paths with.
That experience of learning the roots and foundations of yoga is what made me realise I had to leave my job, that it no longer was serving me. That in fact at the time, I was holding so much stress in my body from a multitude of facets in my life that I conveniently had swept under the rug. It was the pinnacle of me making many big changes in my life and as a consequence everything improved. It unleashed this ferocious curiosity into my own health and wellbeing, exploring many modalities beyond yoga that have helped me on my journey. This set inspiration for my next project (that is non-yoga related, rather health and wellbeing focused); it’s hit core to a fire wildly linked to my heart.
In Sydney, where are your recommended wellness and self-care spots?
I personally love and resonate with the ocean, seeing sunrises or sunsets is immensely cathartic and calming. I’ve also gone through spiral, Chinese medicine, acupuncture, naturopathy, nutritionists, astrologists, kinesiology and human design – they’ve all given grounding, clearing and space for self-care and all typically non-luxurious (though abundant from a soulful place).
For me, true self-care is learning how to authentically and truly love, respect and accept oneself, with all the imperfections and shortcomings. I am only just beginning and learning how to honestly do that and it’s been a very beautiful and releasing process.
My rituals are:
- Practicing yoga at Body Mind Life – Noelle Connolly is the head of yoga and my teacher who I adore.
- Meditation – I practice a few modalities – my current primary is vedic meditation (Matt Ringrose - Bondi Meditation). I practice once to twice daily for 20 minutes. It is a daily essential for me.
- Acupuncture/reiki – Jade Clark of White Owl Clinic at Orchard St Bondi will change your life.
As an advocate for wellness and holistic wellbeing, how do you implement this in your daily rituals?
I could go on and on about this… Daily, I consciously ensure I am moving from a heartful space, that my actions align with body, mind and soul so I really let my body inform me. Challenge and pushing past thresholds are how we progress – I ensure now I do this mindfully and in a healthy way for my body. Yoga is a very natural check in point for me and meditation. And actually breathing. Full body belly breaths is the one connection we have from the mind to the body, and has the power to calm the entire nervous system.
I love this quote from ‘Notes to my Future Daughter’: “Your state of mind influences the chemicals that your body makes. It informs how you sleep, how you digest your food, and how your immune system will respond to infection. Being positive is the best health decision you can ever make”.
Yourself and Tim cut a stylish pair. What is your approach to style?
Tim’s approach is definitely mixing street style with higher end brands, he is also sneaker obsessed!
My style mantra is effortlessly chic – sophistication, minimalism and classic styles that also have comfort and practicality. I do have an acute attention to detail so I definitely choose quality over quantity and I always check fabrication as I like natural fibres.
What brands are you loving/wearing?
Loving the new Bottega Veneta! I’ve purchased a bit of Marques Almeida and Jil Sander of late and Balenciaga is always a fav. Also loving Jacquemus, Maison Margiela. Locally Matteau and Albus Lumen. From a local fine jewellery perspective, I love what my buddy Sarah from Sarah & Sebastian is doing!