Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Ten Question Tuesday - MaryAnne Lo Verme

Hello! Who are you? Give us the 411 about yourself.
MaryAnne LoVerme. Two names. Four capital letters. Every. One. Earned.

When/how did you start your business?
In 2007 I was working in an inner city high school and was dealing with the attendant stresses. I started having crafting play dates with a fellow stressed-out teacher, and we cooked up Wabisabi Brooklyn to be our (at least mental) escape from the difficult day job. (She has since moved to Israel and started her own business). At around the same time, the (now defunct) fabulous Brooklyn Indie Market set up shop every weekend in my Brooklyn neighborhood. We took the plunge and paid for a table, and were delighted when people were willing to give us money for what at that point could have best been described as wearable art therapy. Shortly thereafter we opened up our Etsy shop, That lead me to the New York City Etsy team, The {NewNew}, which is an amazing resource and has helped me grow my business in immeasurable ways.

Apart from creating things, what do you do?
I continue to teach, though now at a lovely independent school. I take many long walks, often while listening to podcasts. I pretend to jog while listening to early 90s indie rock. I own a townhouse with my husband, photographer and web impresario Dalton Rooney. I read books. I spend time with friends and with the internet. I go to the movies with the frequency of an under-25 year old male. I make a killer Manhattan, a decent chili, and a mediocre popover. I
draw badly.

What first made you want to become an artist?
My first job after college was at an investment bank, an endeavor which anyone who knows me even slightly will correctly guess was completely inappropriate for me. One day while walking through the lobby, I noticed that there were Tibetan monks creating an enormous, intricate mandala out of colored sand - I guess it was a sort of "culture the philistine bankers" program. It seemed crazy to me that these men would spend all this time and effort on something that, in the end, they were just going to sweep away. And then I realized that it was really a metaphor for the faith an artist (or teacher) needs to have in order to endure uncertainty and pour themselves into their work: you put your focus into something, give it your all, and then - essentially - sweep it into the wind! In the cold dark days of that soulless job, it gave me hope to think that I could do something similar. I had no idea what medium I wanted to work in, but I knew I wanted to create and to share, and that a job at an investment bank was probably not the best place to do that.

What inspires you?
Curiosity, friendship, and fear.

What's your favorite thing about your craft?
Control! Jewelry-making is the exact opposite of teaching middle schoolers. The materials are quiet, unemotional, and do my bidding. I also enjoy the puzzle-solving aspect of getting new designs to work in terms of physics.

Where would we most likely find you working?
After years of destroying our kitchen with my craft, I am delighted to report that I have a room of my own to create to my heart's content.

What's your favorite music to listen to while you work?

What's your favorite thing right now?
Our house. It is more than a hundred years old, and a two minute walk from where I lived when I was first born.

If you could have one wish granted for the craft community, what would it be?
I am so grateful for finding my team. Crafting is often done in solitude, which I consider to be an integral part of the artistic process. But I wish for everyone to have a group of like-minded pals to swap stories, information, and advice with, and to help them travel over the inevitable bumps in the road.


MaryAnne LoVerme said...

thank you so much for this!

Melissa Bell said...

This was so much fun to read!

Jennifer said...

love MaryAnne and Wabisabi Brooklyn!