All you can do to tell a story

Danielle Ryan, founder of Roads; a selection of her fragrances; Roads book "Behind the Runway"
Danielle Ryan, founder of Roads; a selection of her fragrances; Roads book “Behind the Runway”

For Danielle Ryan entrepreneurship is in her DNA. The granddaughter of RyanAir founder Tony Ryan was trained at the Royal Academy of Art in London. She is a businesswoman, entrepreneur, philanthropist, actress and producer. The 32-year-old is the founder of ROADS and the company’s ethos is based around storytelling on various levels – books, films and fragrances. IRMA wanted to find out how to tell a story with a scent.

IRMA: What do fragrance, publishing and film production have in common and where did you get the idea for a fragrance label?
DANIELLE RYAN: It is the start of Roads being an even more diverse lifestyle brand. We will be adding more companies to the group in the future. The common tie – other than them being passions of mine – is they are, for me, different platforms for communication and collaboration. Everything is based around creating projects from what we see around us. A bit like journalism – if we find something that is cool or worth talking about, we either make a film on the subject, make a fragrance based on it, or do a book about it.

IRMA: Which part of Roads excites you most at the moment?
DANIELLE RYAN: I’m excited by Roads so much at the moment. For me the most exciting challenge is to keep up with how the world is interacting with one another. Also I love being the one to find out what’s cool right now. I’m so inspired daily by what and who I find.

IRMA: You are involved in so many different activities, from charity to publishing, from movies to fragrances. How do you organize yourself and how do you relax?
DANIELLE RYAN: I rely on a very talented team that I hired who know more than me. I’m also regimented about time. Getting up at the same time every day, taking my kids to school, then a workout and into work. I timetable everything that I need to cover into an agenda for the week and stick to it. If I’m concentrating on one thing then I don’t allow myself to get distracted by something else. Concentrate on one task at a time and you can cover a lot of ground. Also when I’m home, I switch off from work – that’s actually when I can think most clearly.

IRMA: What makes you happy?
DANIELLE RYAN: My little kids, my husband, contemporary art, fragrance, theatre, movie binges, innovation projects and anything that’s new and not the norm.

IRMA: Is the world for you immense or does it get smaller and smaller the more you get around and see?
DANIELLE RYAN: The more I travel the more I know how little I know. The world gets bigger and bigger.

IRMA: What is for you true luxury when travelling?
DANIELLE RYAN: Organised cultural trips. Comfort all the way. Efficiency when moving around. Great food.

IRMA: Home sweet home or more and more places to discover?
DANIELLE RYAN: Keep discovering for sure. I would move every year if I could.

IRMA: Is the creation of a scent almost like going on a journey? And if so, what kind of travel?
DANIELLE RYAN: Yes, in that it can be escapism. It’s travel for the imagination.