vesselcollective

Aymie’s Words

In Interview on October 4, 2013 at 5:14 pm

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Aymie Spitzer is the co-founder of Neighborwoods, a project featuring many of the world’s greatest cities in woodcuts. It began with maps and has captured the imagination of folks from all over, including mine. Aymie’s story of Neighborwoods is a testament to the true fact that you can take something that you find interesting and beautiful and adapt it into something that others also find wonderful. Here are her words.

Who are you and what do you do?

 I am a graphic designer and co-founder of Neighborwoods.

How did Neighborwoods come about?

Neighborwoods started as a personal project from Hyperakt Labs, a business model where employees are given the opportunity to make and develop something outside of client work, whether it be a product, website, almost anything. I started experimenting with our laser engraver and combined with my interest in antique maps, Neighborwoods was under way.  

What was the first map you can remember enjoying and what did you think/feel?

The first map I remember being captivated with was a large flat brass world map that my dad had hanging in our home. I stared at it for hours, inspecting its details and wondering where it actually came from. It only had a couple colors printed on top of the brass and now I’m even more interested as to how it was printed and how old it was. 

What has the project taught you?

1. An inkling of an idea can become a successful product with planning, hard work and support.
2. Find good people to join your team. They should bring skills that you don’t possess, making the product stronger and better through collaboration and passion. 
3. The business side isn’t as fun as the creative side, but it’s as important if not more. 

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What have been your favorite moments since you begun the project?

1. Friends and strangers responding with joy and excitement about the product. 
2. Exposure on well known blogs and magazines is a trip!
3. Seeing the brand grow and become its own entity.

What’s been a challenge and how have you overcome it?

It’s been hard envisioning the brand growing from the original wood map and extending to other products. It’s really about where you want the brand to go while sticking true to its foundation.

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[Click below for the full interview]

What do you tell yourself when things get difficult?

Everything will work out one way or another, it’s about if you really want it badly enough.  

How long have you lived in New York and what’s one thing you love about and one thing you could do without?

I lived in Brooklyn for 3 years and recently relocated to San Francisco. The thing I loved most and miss about New York is the endearing and phosphorescent creative community. I moved because I missed that “west coast thing” but do miss almost everything about New York.

What are you grateful for in San Francisco?

I am grateful being closer to my family and having my car again! Driving and exploring makes me happier than almost anything.

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What’s a goal you’ve set for yourself in the next year?

I’ve set many but one for Neighborwoods is to be in a “certain” retail store.  
What can you be spotted doing on a Tuesday afternoon?

Working at a coffee shop or a friends’ studio. 

A Friday evening?

Playing ping pong with fancy cocktails and friends.

A Sunday morning?

Chilling at the park with friends. 

Finish these sentences:
I love: road trips.
I’m always looking for: hand painted signs.
I feel my best when: laughing with and/or riding bikes with friends.
I’ll never: say never!

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