"I also enjoy designing new products: it's like the ideas fly from my mind and find a new home in the wood."
"I'm a serious, hard-working and responsible man born in Antigua Guatemala in 1975. I recently got married and I can't wait to have children. I love to go for long walks, read, and play soccer so as you can see, I'm just like any other man.
"I lead a workshop that specializes in Guatemalan handicrafts, but the story of how I got to do this is not what you'd expect…
"In 1995 my father was called to build this workshop, and I tagged along as a bricklayer's assistant working alongside family members. I loved the kind of work they were doing at the workshop, and realized I wanted to work in wood carving rather than in construction. The workshop owner taught me all the basics and with time and a lot of patience I've developed my style and carve high quality pieces. I feel very proud of what I have achieved considering I never had any formal training. Now not only am I designing, but I work with a team of talented woodcarvers and our main medium is teakwood.
"What I enjoy the most about the process is carving the wood – it's a good challenge to ensure its always carved the same way to ensure high quality pieces that will satisfy clients. I also enjoy designing new products: it's like the ideas fly from my mind and find a new home in the wood.
"I had polio when I was a kid, and it is truly a miracle that the good Lord healed me because I was about to lose my left leg, so it is the thing I am most grateful in life.
"We are six siblings and most are dedicated to either construction or farming, as dad taught us. But I prefer to work in arts and crafts, though I do enjoy working in the fields depending on the time of the year.
"I love what I do, I have acquired considerable experience and it is rewarding to see people appreciate my work. We work with sustainable woods and everything we do is entirely done by hand. It is our way of preserving the environment.
"I think Novica is a great opportunity for artisans like us because it helps us reach people in different parts of the world and show them what we are capable of making, and our way of life. Customers can be sure that what they're holding in their hand is entirely crafted by hand with a lot of care and dedication. I would like to express my thanks to Novica customers for their welcoming our culture and I hope that through my story you get a little idea of what life in Guatemala is like."
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