Miniatures by Nastya Ivanova and Slava Krykanov of MayLina
Nastya: I saw a lot of miniatures and tutorials and my interest grew. So, I tried making miniature charms. They were awful. I think my love of miniatures started when I began working with polymer clay.
Slava: My first experience with miniatures came from making ships in bottles. Then, I made a little church from matches.
Where does the Instagram account name ‘MayLina’ come from?
I came up with this name when I was 12 years old. It comes from the spring month, May, and the name Lina. I don’t know why! But now, it means a little bit more for us. “MayLina” is very similar to the Russian world malina, which translates to raspberries. And I have this same hair color right now!
Nastya: My first miniature was also my first creation out of polymer clay. It was two donuts for earrings. I think it was in 1:4 scale.
Slava: I was sick and bored, so I tried to make a ship model in a bottle. I gave it to my friend.
What is your favorite type of miniature to make?
Nastya: Right now it’s food, but I really want to make other types of miniatures, like furniture or accessories.
Slava: I like to make everything out of wood. It’s really my favorite material.
What’s your favorite type of miniature food to create?
Nastya: I love to create bakery products and kinds of sweets. My favorite miniatures to make are pancakes.
What is the most challenging miniature to make?
Nastya: I really don’t like the cane technique! I can’t do these at all. They always turn out to be terrible monsters when I cut them. Also, I don’t like to make plates and cutlery from polymer clay. The results are not as elegant as they could be. So, I’m trying to create plates out of ceramic, and hope to show them to you all in the near future.
What advice would you give to new miniaturists?
Hm… We think that it would be: “love what you create.” We think that if you obey this rule, you will always create master pieces.
Nastya: Sometimes, when I force myself to work, I need someone to tell me this, because I forget about this saying and can have very bad results.
Nastya: I really don’t know! I love everything that I create. But.. Most of all I think it is apple pie and apples.
Slava: My favorite is a wooden box with bananas and mangoes. It’s very bright and colorful and it really stands out.
What inspires you?
What is the most memorable miniature you have ever seen?
Nastya: A couple of days ago, I saw one miniature artist cooking real food in a miniature kitchen. I looked at this and couldn’t understand what happened.
Who are some of your favorite miniature artisans?
Nastya: My favorite artist is Maria Kosova from Moscow. She is an amazing polymer clay and metal artist. And recently she created fairy miniature scenes from polymer clay, metal, and glass in 1:12 and 1:24 scale. She must use a lot of secrets in her work, and I would love to try and unravel them through a lot of experiments.
Nastya: I’ve always wanted to see Moscow City skyscrapers in the 1:12 scale.
Slava: I want to collaborate with all the cool miniaturists out there and create a really awesome dollhouse.
What’s to come from MayLina?
Slava: Using more exotic materials, developing our own studio, and buying new equipment.
Nastya: Do everything that makes you happy.
Slava: Work hard.
Favorite miniature quote?
Enjoy the little things. It’s the official motto of our brand.
Other activities you enjoy?
Slava: I conduct searches for World War II era soldiers missing in action.
MayLina was created by polymer clay artist Nastya Ivanova and woodworker Slava Krykanov. These Moscow-based collaborators have miniatures for sale on Etsy. Follow along to see what they’re creating on Pinterest and on Instagram at @maylina1 and @1dark3.