By Appointment with Maya MK: GIA accredited, Founding Editor of The Carat Soup and Social Media Guru
We’ve met before…
Through countless articles, via Instagram and of course IRL.
After 3.5 years, I think it’s time for you to have an appointment with me – to find out a little more. I absolutely adore devouring research about the algorithm and its close link to social media. Reading and writing articles. Additionally being a tactile being, I cannot resist the scent and feel of a (paper) book. I spend half my time selling and marketing gemstones and the other half is – when the mines are closed – dedicated to my media adventures and writing endeavours.
Who do you work with?
Gems/jewellery: it varies as it depends on the nature of the transaction. Since I started in this industry, I’ve worked alongside various people in different capacities, who are involved with production, from mine to market.
Writing: I report to a medley of senior journalists. Mainly editors, reporters and fellow writers.
Describe the current gem/jewellery industry?
There’s been an increase in demand for coloured stones. Delighted that more and more people are starting to appreciate the quality and value of these unique gems. I always stress the importance of the millions (and sometimes billions) of years it takes for a gemstone to form, leave the depths of the earth and end up in our hands. As well as the hundreds, in some cases thousands of people involved in making this journey possible. From miners, to dealers, Lapidarists and designers. The list is endless, that’s to give you a flavour.
Describe the current digital media industry?
Things have changed A LOT since my first ever blog post in 2008. I was a fashion blogger – blogging wasn’t really a thing then – and making my mark. I look back and at times wish I’d continued blogging, yet it no longer served it’s purpose, nor my interests and I didn’t feel as though I was true to myself.
In related news, my friends found it utterly hilarious that I’d photograph my lunch (using an old Blackberry mobile, if you remember those?!). Though they, along with my boyfriend at the time, happily helped with photo shoots for my ‘look of the day’. I also ran an e-commerce platform alongside this selling complete looks, accessories and individual pieces.
Which direction do you see the gem/jewellery industry going, in the next 5 – 10 years? How does it compare to when you started?
Emphasis on the return to craftsmanship, coupled with an even greater demand for coloured stones. Additionally we have become more conscious with the source and ethics associated with how we get our products from the source to the market.
When I started out, I was a mere toddler, observing family members as they prepared parcels of aquamarine, amethyst, emeralds and mandarin garnet. My family has a big box of old photographs and it makes me smile seeing my little face curiously staring at the spectacle as it unfolded.
Which direction do you see the digital media industry going, in the next 5 – 10 years? How does it compare to when you started?
Social media is the present and the future. We no longer need ‘the old institutions’ to tell us how and what to write. With simple equipment (laptop, actually even our smartphones can do the job), the Internet and self-motivation, anybody can start, grow and establish themselves in the world of digital media. It took me ages to get here yet I’m thrilled to have the opportunities I’ve been presented in the last decade.
When I started there were a couple of key players. We’d all write to each other via flikr one of the girls even became a case study at one of the world’s most famous business schools.
3. The Devil Wears Prada (think I’ve seen this 3,186 times, guffaw)
What is your source of inspiration?
Wholeheartedly inspired by Mother Nature and the patterns I observe in nature. Whenever I get writer’s block, I go for a walk and suddenly inspiration hits!
Who is your source of inspiration?
Truly blessed to be surrounded by formidable people in my family. As well as strong women in my friendship group. They all inspire me to pursue my purpose, live my truth and make the most of my talents. As well as nurturing what I can become better at.
What motivates you to stay in this role and industry?
I’m here to tell the story of the gemstones and the people behind the gemstones. I always say I wish the gemstones could talk to tell their own story. Until that happens, I shall continue to share it on their behalf. The industry has moments of serendipity that cannot be expressed and only experienced – this also strongly motivates me and allows me to continue to believe in miracles and the magic of humanity.
Anything else you’d like to tell us before we go?
Make the most of your journey and your story. Every role, person and experience you have has a learning opportunity woven into it. There are 7,000,000,000+ people in the world, yet your story is yours. Be your authentic-self and the rest will figure itself out.