Instagram sensations Murad and Nataly Osmann transport viewers to inspiring locations through their social media page. Here is how it all began.
Eight years ago in Barcelona, Murad Osmann and his then-girlfriend Nataly took their first trip together. Little did they know a simple gesture caught by his camera would bring them international fame.
“We were just walking around the city, and I was taking pictures of Nataly everywhere,” says Murad, who was a civil engineering student at the time. “At some point, she dragged me forward, as there were probably too many pictures already, and I had managed to snap that moment on the phone. Back then there were very few apps that could retouch images on the phone the way I wanted, but some new ones had just come out, and I really liked the result.”
Murad continued taking photos in the same style whenever the pair traveled together. His captivating landscapes featuring Nataly in the foreground, leading the way with her hand grasping his, found an audience thanks to a simple Instagram post. Eventually, The Daily Mail picked up the couple’s story, setting Murad’s career on a new path.
“I always had a passion for art, so after finishing university, I didn’t work in my profession, and decided to pursue photography,” Murad explains. “Funny enough, I stopped being a photographer and opened a production house with my friend, and only then the project started.”
Staying on brand
While grateful for new opportunities, neither Murad nor his wife is willing to compromise.
“From day one, we put the integrity of our project to high standards,” Murad says. “We rejected 95 percent of the commercial work that came our way, and only agreed to work with brands that would share our same philosophy.”
“We still put content that resonates with us first, and don’t run after hype.”
Advice for safe, sustainable travel
As top travel influencers, the couple continues looking for destinations to share with their millions of followers.
“We try to search for places that are off the beaten paths. Unfortunately, we don’t really have as much time to travel, as we both work in Moscow and can’t leave the country for several months. Usually, Nataly and I would look for the hashtags of the location we would visit, then go on Pinterest and check for additional ones. Another tip is to ask local Instagrammers about their hidden gems.”
Murad says while traveling to certain destinations, opt for electric, not petrol, scooters. Also, control plastic waste by using reusable bags and avoiding single-use plastics.
He adds, “In terms of cultures, I think it’s important to support businesses that support locals.”
Looking to the future
Deeply influenced by excursions to India and other countries, the Osmanns are currently raising money to build wells for people in need.
“This year we visited Ethiopia. In this country, 60 million people do not have access to clean, safe drinking water. It means every day they travel long distances and carry huge cans.”
And to think it all started with one lucky snapshot.