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This Is Me: Daniela Bily

The art director and blogger talks chipping the ego and smiling at your sisters!

Interview by Anna Langer

Longboarding is like snowboarding in powder, it’s cool to have the possibility to catch this feeling on the street, especially when you live in a city far away from the mountains. It’s a bit smoother than skateboarding, depending on what kind you do of course as there is also crazy stuff like racing downhill, but I’m more into the dancing style and being creative on the board, but I’m still learning…

I’ve been into dancing before, I started with modern dance, then I turned into street dance but I have a hard time keeping all the choreographies in my head so I’m more in the freestyle section, haha…

Born in Zell am See, I was brought up really sporty by my parents, I got a lot of tennis training, was captain of our volley ball team and all that kind of stuff…

Boardsports came up when I was about 12 years, I think. I started skiing like everyone but then this board thing came up and I never stood on skis again after that! The place I grew up is a winter paradise, the mountain was about 10 minutes away so we ditched school to go riding sometimes…

Together with a friend of mine, Kathrin, I run the blog Smile At Your Sister. In Vienna, where we live, I didn’t know a lot of girls who were into boardsports so I always felt kind of alone, until I got a hold of a copy of Cooler mag one day. I still remember lying in the Burggarten , super stoked to see that there must be other girls loving the same things as me. I especially liked the combination of boardsports and the whole lifestyle thing. I’m not an aggressive sporty girl myself, I do it because I love to do it and not because I want to win or be the best, so I really loved the approach there. Knowing that there must be more girls like that was a really freeing feeling. In the beginning the blog was mainly a collection of photos of girls in action but it has developed and is more about us now, our travels, the things we see and that inspire us, the sports we do, and also events we create, like the wakeboard event we did in Vienna last summer, of which we want to do even more in future.

The most important thing is to just enjoy what you are doing and not be too serious about yourself.I know it from myself, the first time I went surfing it was like being in a war with the water and I lost the fun in it. So I think the most important part is to enjoy yourself and to be happy that you have the possibility to do all these amazing things. It’s a gift, not a given.

I don’t really remember how we came up with the name, Kathrin and me were hanging out and suddenly it was there. Since I am the art director of several fashion magazines, I stumble upon a lot of fashion blogs where girls take pictures of themselves wearing different outfits everyday. I don’t get that thing. Is our perception that superficial? Don’t get me wrong, I love beautifully and interesting dressed people but I think there must be more than just to look awesome. It’s about to be able to DO something, to have a talent, to follow a passion. The blog became a place of the grand girls who inspire us in their way of living. We want to support each other. Imagine a world with more people turning off the ego … hence the name.

Besides going on trips and meeting many interesting girls on my way some more great things happened since I run the blog. I am a proud bandenmitglied of sixxa and I did the design for the first ever women’s longboard camp which will be held this summer in Slovenia.

Next week we’re gonna launch the second edition of Secret Smile, it’s a little baggie full of wonders by girls with soul. There will be artworks in there from girls we featured on the blog, like a poster, photographies, music, jewellery and a zine with statements of inspiring designers, longboarder and surfer girls dealing with the topic “don’t believe everything you think.”  So yeah, it’s a collection of little hand-made things because we believe in the small things and in imperfection.

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