Why did you choose the Czech Republic?
My Czech friend in Ecuador enticed me. I fell for the Czech glass tradition and wanted to study glass design. Without the experience that the Czechs who attended glass high schools had, I needed to be realistic, so I decided to follow my grandfather's craft – leatherworking.
Did he ever teach you?
He passed away when I was a child. My parents gave his workshop's ancient equipment to a museum. They didn't assume someone would continue the tradition. Today, one of my main aims is to preserve the craft. That's why I like to teach it too.
Is a craftsman always a designer?
In the Czech Republic, there are usually shoemakers who make perfect shoes in classic shapes. Not many of them are also designers. As an educated designer, I am trained to innovate. I learned the craft from Czech masters, and I combine it with my creativity.
What are your sources of inspiration?
So many things! Architecture, nature, Czech and Ecuadorian folklore... I like to reinterpret textures that are abundantly present in Ecuadorian culture: geometric shapes, symbols, colours. But in the end, what I make is the result of an international blend of influences.