International Cat Day: A Day in the Life of a Cat (Illustrator) Lady

Natalia Illarionova

Yes, today is International Cat Day and yes, we’re totally celebrating it. In honor of our furry four-legged friends, we caught up with cat lover and illustrator, Natalia, to chat all things feline and see what she gets up to as a young freelance illustrator.

Natalia Illarionova
Natalia Illarionova

Name: Natalia Illarionova
Home: Austria
Fiverr Tagline: “Kind illustrations and great patterns”

Hey Natalia! Tell us a little bit about yourself

Hi! Well, my name is Natalia and I draw cats for money 🙂
I live in Vienna at the moment, but I was born and raised in St. Petersburg, Russia, which totally shaped my work habits. Since there is very little daylight during the winter, it doesn’t really matter when you wake up – it will probably be dark anyway! Therefore, I’m a total night owl and I love working late hours.

We’re obsessed with your cats

Thanks! I grew up with three cats and two dogs (which was basically a mini zoo in a city apartment) and animals were always a huge part of my life. At the moment I don’t have any of my own, but I plan on getting one a soon as I settle down. Don’t worry, I make up for it with 11 (yes, I counted) cat knick-knacks which are currently decorating my living room. I think that cats are amazing creatures and I cannot imagine our lives without them.

Natalia Illarionova

Walk us through your typical day

10:00 AM – 11:00 AM – Rise and Shine
Since I go to bed late, I usually wake up around 10-11 AM. The first thing I do is hit the shower, make coffee (a must) and then go online. I’m a freelance illustrator so I am responsible for all aspects of my business. I have to be on top of it all – drawing, communicating with buyers, social media up-keeping and so on. I then eat breakfast while checking my emails and all of that usually takes me a few hours.

13:00 PM – 15:00 PM – Work Time
I don’t have fixed work hours so I usually get sh*t done between 13:00-15:00 PM. I prefer to cram most of my to-do list before I take my “big break”, later in the evening. In addition to my work, I’ve also gone back to university, so I have to fit a bit of studying in my schedule as well (Not to mention household work – ugh!).

Sketching cats
Natalia Illarionova
Buddha Cat17:00-21:00 – The Big Break

I love the sun so I have a habit of going out for a walk just before sunset. Afterward, I usually go climbing, salsa dancing or I’ll just hang out with friends, who are usually out of the office by then. If the weather is nice I might go swimming and if I have classes I’ll spend the day at the university and work later that evening. No day is exactly the same as the previous one, so I make sure I schedule my work around my life and not the other way around.

2 AM – At the End of the Day International Cat Day
After my break, I come home (which is also my studio) and draw well into the night. I usually go to bed past 2 AM, which is a habit I picked up when I was still living at home with my family. I think that the best time to get work done was when everybody was snoozing and nobody is bothering you. But as a single, all-grown-up girl, it works just the same. Darkness is a good friend of creativity 🙂


Check out (and fall in love with) Natalia’s other Gigs

Lior Pesso
Lior Pesso is Fiverr's Editorial Content Specialist! With over 8 years of experience in the writing biz, she works out of our sizzling Tel Aviv offices and lives for fun, share-worthy content. Got an awesome idea for Fiverr blog post? Find her on Linkedin!