Deniz Yilmaz

Founder at Match-Up Mag, Istanbul


Deniz is drawn to living in Istanbul because people of all backgrounds, races, ages and ethnicities converge there. She says that traveling, photography and writing are the pieces of puzzle that makes her who she is. Films, nature, art exhibitions, Gypsy songs and amazing life stories are but a few of her many inspirations. Aside from freelancing, she has also published a magazine called match-up and created a project called Who They Art, which connects artists, travelers and designers throughout the world.



Your idea of happiness?

There are many definitions of happiness in my mind. Happiness is peace, balance and being with my beloved ones. Happiness is nature, being close to the sea and a blue sky. And also, traveling, exploring new lands and meeting new people.


Your idea of misery?

Suspicions and dilemmas about my life give me enough misery.


If not yourself, who would you be?

I want to be a fisherman who lives in Hawaii, I don't know why but I like the idea of it.


Your heroes?

My best friend and my husband; Türker. 


What is your present state of mind?

Tired but happy. My brain is full of projects, dreams and plans.


Bedside table books?

Alain de Botton, The Art of Travel and The Modern Magazine by Jeremy Leslie.


What do you do if you can’t sleep at night?

If I can't sleep, I would drink a glass of wine, write some short essays, and check Instagram for a while.


Do you collect anything?

Yes, I collect small animal figurines from the places I travel to, glass coasters taken from bars, notebooks full of memories and vintage sunnies.


What is the strangest thing you believed in as a child?

I made myself believe that I had a dog that never existed. I bought a toy dog then and I took him out every day like a real dog. Everyone stared at me.


Favorite color?

Cotton candy pink and blue.


Favorite city?

Paris for sure!


What are your plans for this weekend?

I'm gonna have a wedding ceremony and gathering with my parents and friends.


Favorite song?

“Le Vent,” by Tony Gatlif.


Right or left-handed?



What is the best dish you can cook?

Turkish "börek" and bruschetta.


What is your middle name?

I don't have one.


What do you do in your free time?

I like to watch movies; especially French and Mediterranean movies. Reading blogs, books, writing short essays, painting, making collages and walking around back streets of Istanbul.