"Despite having so much silver in the region, there are no artisans who work with it. I'd like to be an influence to help develop an art that reflects the quality of life in the region."
"My name is Marco Antonio Reyes. I'm from Chihuahua and I craft silver jewelry.
"For me, love at first sight exists. The first time I saw someone create silver jewelry, I fell in love. Unfortunately, that person didn't want to teach me but, thanks to my stubbornness, I kept trying, until I managed to do it for myself.
"Only with patience and after dedicating many hours a day, I started to gain the needed crafting skills and, with practice and effort, I continued to learn each day. For me, the most important part in this process is doing something I enjoy and I never feel as though it's something I have to do. Creating jewelry is something I want to do.
"What I like the most is transforming and molding a metal to make almost anything, because what's most important is your imagination. It's fascinating to transform an idea into something a customer will like. For me, inspiration is something that simply arises on its own. Some designs may start with something I've seen, but I reinvent the concept and make it my own idea and evolve from there.
"A few years ago, I failed in trying to start my own workshop. I wanted to expand too fast, and things didn't go the way I wanted. I know this experience has been the best thing that's happened to me because you always learn from mistakes and find the good in the bad. My persistence, discipline and constancy have helped me keep going and today, I'm happy doing what I love. It's incredible knowing that my creativity, ideas, dreams and efforts can make my designs become a reality.
"I work with gemstones from Chihuahua and other parts of Mexico. Sometimes I buy stones from other countries. I begin with pure silver, which is quite soft, and turn it into 925 sterling silver.
"Chihuahua is Mexico's second-largest silver producer, so I work with local providers. Unfortunately, despite having so much silver in the region, there are no artisans who work with it. I'd like to be an influence to help develop an art that reflects the quality of life in the region.
"I'm not very interested in fame, but I'd like for my venture to grow, not just to see more people wearing my designs, but also to have all of the necessary equipment and materials and not worry about economizing. I'm sure a lot of talent and creativity exist here, and the only thing missing is to learn the craft. I'd like to be able to teach others what I know, to benefit the community."