Every day there are great stories that are reproduced in the platform TikTok. One of them is a Ismael Gutierrez, a craftsman of Oaxaca, which is shown in the social network his extraordinary work with rugs made with techniques zapotec.
Ismael is originally from Teotitlan del Valle, a town located about 20 minutes from the City of Oaxaca, Mexico. In the village, which in nahuatl means “a place between the gods”the inhabitants are engaged in the production of rugs of wool.
Next to his family, the 23-year old man has a workshop that is called “Linda Zapotec”. The local, which is in the centre of the village, has approximately 10 years of existence and has gradually grown with his work.
“My dad taught me the technique since I was twelve years. Right now I have 23 old and since I was going to high school I was starting to knit designs simple,” said Ishmael in an interview with Infobae Mexico.
In Linda Zapotec work six people, in addition to Ishmael. Is his grandmother, two uncles, his mom and his dad. Also, your sister is to help in the administrative part of social networks.
It is precisely in this part, the craftsman took advantage of the impact of this type of applications to show your work and that of your family. First started with an account in Instagram that is called Gallery Linda Zapotec (@lindazapotecaand your personal account (@isma_rugs).
“Since then, with the quarantine (due to the epidemic of COVID-19), I wanted to get out of the traditional and work a style a bit more own. I’ve entered in the style of pixel” he said, ” young man oaxacan.
That was when he started using TikTok to mix the craftsmanship zapotec with the great figures of the culture geek. At the end of the reel on your account (@isma_tron) there are videos with the design of the famous plumber Mario Bros., Pac Man and until some members of the Avengers, as Spiderman or Iron Man.
“I went up little by little the content to platforms such as TikTok and I saw that I had a bit of answers. Then I got him a little more editing to the videos and I was cheering to create a page that is more specialized,” he recalled during a telephone interview.
At first I was excited a lot with the first videos that I was uploading. If you put a little more work, you may have the best results, I thought
His first videos had few views and a few likescompared with the influencers most common platforms. However, the work in the editing of your content and interacting with users, came to your first video with over a million views.
“There were comments saying: ‘it Is interesting’, ‘you should upload more videos’, ‘this content I like’. This was the motivation that led me to continue to upload more content and also with the page of Instagram,” he explained.
A long process and quality
In one of his last videos, Ishmael explains, in just a minute, the process of developing a mat of wool. However, the time to make one of these products is approximately between three and four days.
“Sometimes there are designs of circles that are a little more detailed. In these plasma is the drawing painted on the cardboard, and only traces in the thread. What are frets or diamonds are a little bit faster to knit, but more than anything it is patience”, said the craftsman.
In terms of the cost, Ishmael indicated that the process of development has a price of 450 to 600 mexican pesos. “We already sell it to 850 or 900 pesos, depending on the design,” he explained. That is to say, the commercial price is about USD 40.
Despite the laborious work, there are people who try to “haggle” the price of their products. “Yes we feel bad, but we try to give our grain of sand to show the client that it is a detailed work that takes time” said the young craftsman.
Really all of this effort is reflected in the cost of the mat
Orders to the national and international level
One of the main sources of employment of Teotitlan del Valle is the tourism. However, the epidemic of coronavirus stopped the economic activitiesdue to the quarantine in Mexico.
“Tourism slowed down in the town. Even there were roadblocks on the people and not let people coming in from outside. The only way of selling was through orders and shipments” noted Ismael.
The sales all fell, there were no customers and we had to hold on to the savings that we have saved
However, The initiative of Ismael generated a gate of trade to his family, to be able to sell the rugs in other parts of the Republic and even abroad.
“Right now we are dealing with international shipments, depending on the place. We have had a considerable growth, thanks be to God”ended Ismael Gutierrez.
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