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Elena Odnoval of Amega Family: “Believe in yourself and in what you do!”

Believe in yourself and in what you do! Never give up, work hard and always pursue your goals even when others around bring you down or things look bleak at that moment. Failure and mistakes will always happen, and it is a part of the learning process, it is a big necessary step towards long […]

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Believe in yourself and in what you do! Never give up, work hard and always pursue your goals even when others around bring you down or things look bleak at that moment. Failure and mistakes will always happen, and it is a part of the learning process, it is a big necessary step towards long term development and success. Sometimes you will have to take two steps back before taking one step forward and it is OK — it is called experience! Believe in yourself and give your all to the project full time and results will definitely come!


I had the distinct pleasure of interviewing Elena Odnoval.

Elena and her children Stacy (12), Artem (15) and Mia (3) have created original educational and entertaining video content with their flagship YouTube channel Nastya Artem Mia. Elena wears many hats as mom, producer, director, screenwriter, staging and props. She makes producing content an educational, fun, and creative time for the entire family that allows them to be together and do what they love. Filming takes place 3–4 times a week — mostly over the weekends and sometimes during the school week and of course only after homework is done. Their goal is to teach their viewers core values of respect, self-expression, morality, honesty, creativity, originality, exploration, breaking down stereotypes, determination, team-work, empathy, healthy competition and positive inspiration


Thank you so much for joining us in this interview series! Can you tell us a story about what brought you to this specific career path?

In the beginning as we traveled around United States, we started to make lifestyle videos about our adventures for our friends and family in Russia to see and learn about this amazing country. We started posting videos on YouTube and noticed that feedback and comments were great from viewers other than our friends and family. Many comments and praise were directed to my children and to their great personalities and phenomenal ease with which they acted in the videos. At that point I decided that we should try to take this undertaking to next level and film scripted, high quality and professional educational and entertaining videos for children to post on YouTube — viewership grew exponentially right away as a testament to our efforts and hard work and the rest is history!

Can you share the most interesting story that happened to you since you started this career?

We were filming an episode in which my son Artem was riding on a small scooter in a «Hulk» costume and this looked very unusual and bystanders were taking pictures and videos of us. Later I realized that some of these pictures and videos made by bystanders showed up online on Instagram and I actually became a star as well alongside my children.

Can you share a story about the funniest mistake you made when you were first starting?

In the very beginning my English language was very limited and I relied on translator apps — but very soon I realized that it was not the best way to produce videos since sometimes the words got «mixed up» in translation and the video’s story line would come out in a different and often funny way. Can you tell us what lesson you learned from that? The lesson was that I needed to learn English fast to make our content even better and continue to move forward — and I made this effort by working almost every day with tutors and by myself and now my English is quite good.

What are some of the most interesting or exciting projects you are working on now?

Being big and popular on YouTube is great and we are very humbled by our success, but we never stop and always working towards bigger accomplishments. Right now, we are working on a number of projects to take our current success offline to diversify and reach bigger audiences. For example we are planning to record original song to be performed by my children and making a music video. We are also working on exploring opportunities in traditional media and are developing creative ideas for a TV sitcom and motion pictures based on our content and family brand. We are producing right now a big series of episodes focusing on inspirational and educational aspects to help children with learning while many of them are at home during COVID.

Which tips would you recommend to your colleagues in your industry to help them to thrive and not “burn out”?

Not to “burn out” is all about planning and scheduling — learn how to do this and it will be pretty easy. Do the homework and prepping on-time and always work on improving and innovation. You have to enjoy what you do every day, live in the process and then success will definitely come!

You have been blessed with success in a career path that can be challenging. Do you have any words of advice for others who may want to embark on this career path, but seem daunted by the prospect of failure?

Believe in yourself and in what you do! Never give up, work hard and always pursue your goals even when others around bring you down or things look bleak at that moment. Failure and mistakes will always happen, and it is a part of the learning process, it is a big necessary step towards long term development and success. Sometimes you will have to take two steps back before taking one step forward and it is OK — it is called experience! Believe in yourself and give your all to the project full time and results will definitely come!

Can you share with our readers any self-care routines, practices or treatments that you do to help your body, mind or heart to thrive? Kindly share a story or an example for each.

Making quality videos with great story lines is not easy as it involves a lot of preparation and work with children which sometimes can get tricky to make a perfect shot — so the best self-care routine for me is exercising; in particular I and my husband ride bikes every day and we love going to the beach where it is calm and I can come up with new ideas for our videos. Spending time with your family and children also very helpful for me as it helps me psychologically to wind down, especially the time I spend with my children before they go to sleep where we talk about their day. I treasure these moments very much because they give me energy and creative inspiration — many of my ideas for story lines come during these times when I hear my children talk about what is important and interesting to them in real life. it is the simple everyday things by our side that have the most impact and influence that we just have to notice!

What are your “5 things I wish someone told me when I first started” and why. Please share a story or example for each.

  1. I wish I knew from the start importance of learning English — made some silly and funny mistakes that could have been easily avoided.
  2. Listen more to the creative ideas and suggestions that come from children — in many instances these ideas made our videos much more unique and interesting. I can track the effect of this input through analytics and retention where I know that my children’s suggestions were well received by viewers.
  3. If the production does not come out perfect 1st time, redo it as many times as necessary before posting for your fans to see. In the beginning I had some videos that had simple mistakes which could have been easily corrected.
  4. Organization is the key to success — importance to pay attention to small details of every aspect of production whether it is stage props or editing — all minor aspects are fundamental.
  5. If the production process does not go how you want right away, don’t stress out and take a step back and look at it from a different perspective — a cup of coffee does the trick for me every time!

Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Can you share how that was relevant to you in your life?

My favorite Life Lesson Quote is that “all unique, amazing and inspiring things are simple in nature and are always around us!” Time you spend with your children is precious and inspiring — you just have to make an effort to listen. This is especially true for me with my youngest girl Mia who is only 3 years old — I can see how she thinks, what interests her and how she creates a magical world through her eyes which I can incorporate into our videos to make them even more amazing.

None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story about that?

I am very grateful to my family! We are like a big and powerful locomotive train that never stops and always moves forward. Even though each member of my family is unique in their own way, together we are unstoppable, full of energy and optimism creative force going for our dreams and goals. I am also very grateful to my Mom, whose love and support I feel every minute despite her being thousands and thousands of miles away.

You are a person of enormous influence. If you could start a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. 🙂

I am very lucky and blessed to have 3 wonderful and talented children who are always together and are inseparable despite their age difference. They are very social and open and love to be around people and communicate. It is these values of communication and friendship that I try to incorporate into all of my content and I would love to help other children to «open up» and become more interactive and extravert, step outside their rooms and make friends and build relationships based on respect and kindness. — this will be great for their development and future life.

We are very blessed that some of the biggest names in Business, VC funding, Sports, and Entertainment read this column. Is there a person in the world, or in the US whom you would love to have a private breakfast or lunch with, and why? He or she might see this. 🙂

I hope that my answers in this article will be seen and read by Moms and Dads, Grandparents, Aunts and Uncles around the world. I hope to inspire them to understand the importance of giving our children attention and time despite being busy with our own lives. Paying attention to our children and to small details will allow a parent to notice their talents that can be farther developed into unlimited success. Just dedicate one day a week, put away your phones and work and spend it with your children and you will discover many unique things about your child that you never noticed before — this is very important for me and I am speaking from my personal experience. One never knows what this attention can result in — for me this approach brought us closer as a family and of course the success and popularity around the world through our video productions. Make your children feel special and unique — our support and attention will create many pleasant moments and happiness. On the other note, lunch with Oprah would definitely be exciting and amazing!

How can our readers follow you online?

Besides our main 17 multi-lingual channels on YouTube « Nastya Artem Mia» and «H2O», we have trending Instagram profiles which are fun and very engaging and informative with a lot of amazing content and stories. One of our main pages on Instagram is «Amega_Family» and is dedicated to our everyday family life and our personal pages are «elena.odnovol», «nastya.odnovol», «artem_odnovol» and «mia_odnovol».

Thank you so much for joining us. This was very inspirational!

Thank you very much for this opportunity to tell your readers about my life and work. I hope my story inspires others to believe in themselves and pursue their dreams!


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