We had the good fortune of connecting with Maria A. Perez and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Maria A., have you ever found yourself in a spot where you had to decide whether to give up or keep going? How did you make the choice?
All entrepreneurship has challenges and moments in which you can think is not worth it to continue. However, if you do what you love and are passionate about your business, it will be easier to stay strong and persistent. Therefore it is important to start a business with purpose and passion. There is many people who at early age discover what they love to do, either because they have a special talent or grow in a stimulating environment. Most of us grow up without being sure or having any idea of what our passion might be. Modern life push us to choose a career or trade since a very young age, sometimes taking a path that may not be the best for us. In order to build a successful society, I think is crucial to encourage young people to explore and learn about different careers and business options before choosing a path. Traveling is key in this search, knowing other cultures and ways of living opens your mind and your perspective becomes much broader. It is also essential to try different kind of activities; art, cooking, writing, music, science and technology, are some examples. In this sense, parents and the educational system have a lot of responsibility on guiding children. Once we have found our passion, the challenge is to make it profitable so that it can last, here is the success.

Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I am the founder of by_map, a Hand-painted Slow fashion, Resort wear Brand based in Miami that creates unique statement pieces fusing art, authenticity, ethical process and beauty. It is designed, hand-painted and signed by me. We are proud to produce ethically handmade exclusive collections. Each piece is individually hand-painted and can take 5 to 7 days to be completed. The pieces are characterized by their hand-painted finish and being one of a kind. The brand uses a combination of highly-resistant acrylic paints, great quality linens and cottons to ensure durability and withstand hand washing. This values make us a Slow Fashion brand. My new collection “Amaneceres” is inspired by Latin American countryside, evoking it’s essence and nuances. The patterns come from nature’s shapes and colors. Soft flowers and fruits give a bucolic context to this collection along with an impeccable style. Running my own business has been a path of ups and downs. I had to understand that any entrepreneurship has a maturation process that can be quite long. Consistency and perseverance have been the key to continue. Despite the moments of weakness where you want to abandon everything, we must continue, never stop, if it does not go well in a way we should try another way and never lose heart. I guarantee you that it’s worth overcoming the problems, the difficulties and the prejudices, for what you love to do.

If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
These are my favorite places in Miami and why I think it is worth visiting: Miami beach due to art deco architecture, lifestyle and beach. Wynwood due to art, music, people and culture. Key West for the essence and history of the city. Everglades for adventure and nature.

Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I would like to dedicate my success to my family who have always supported my dreams and ideas, especially my husband who keep supporting me in so many ways and encourage me to keep going every day. It’s so important to have a partner in life and dreams.

Website: www.by-map.com
Instagram: @by_map

Image Credits
Ph; Romina D’addio Mua: Beatriz Mata