Creative Director at Hispánica
Maria
Almanza

María José Almanza is the founder and CEO of HISPÁNICA, a creative studio based in Mexico City and working worldwide.

Ciudad de México, México • August 24, 2022

What led you into design?

When I was younger, I started to notice ways in which brands could be more relatable to the user and provide a better experience. I remember one time eating out at my favourite restaurant I was handed a terrible menu. So I gave them tips on how to make it look better, it wasn’t just about the visual aspect, but how it could be easier to understand. I realized how those ideas could be useful for companies and became part of my work.

What does a typical day look like?

I usually get up at 7 o'clock in the morning.  A Colombian cup of coffee, exercise, or yoga and a healthy breakfast. 

I mostly work from home. There are some – always on – tasks but everyday looks different, from new projects, to meetings, productions, and others.

I like to take my dog for walks, it’s a way to wind down after a long day of work. Then I have dinner or make different plans by myself or with family and friends. 

I love constant change and not sticking to a routine.

Martina

What’s your workstation setup?

  • 47e616e4-2bf7-4847-9bf3-268ad2464aa7.jpg

Where do you go to get inspired?

Inspiration can strike anywhere, one of my favourites are travelling to big cities and exploring the internet.

I love seeing interior design projects. I apply it by thinking of new ways to order / add something for each area of my house – it’s an always on project, serving something visual and tangible. A way to renew the atmosphere. Creating environments gives me peace of mind, to seek changes that propose new meanings; like how materials, colours and textures produce sensations through specific combinations.

What product have you recently seen that made you think this is great design?

I’d choose the Bellagio table, its delicate design allows it to be both an object of decoration as well as to complete its original purpose. The proportions make it perfect to place almost anywhere.

The material is quite important, they have it in a smoked gray glass version which is beautiful.

© Minotti

What pieces of work are you most proud of?

We are currently working with Dialpad, a San Francisco based company with an amazing product! It’s been so cool to work in recurring but very variable projects and collaborating with many talented people. Dialpad has given us the chance to work with identity explorations, art direction, photography, video, 3D, animation, design, and other upcoming projects we will share soon.

  • hispanica-creative-services.png
  • hispanica-creative-services-hispanica-creative-services.png

What design challenges do you face at your company?

There are a lot. To work for Hispánica and our clients always aligned with company goals. Assemble structures, improve processes, find the best way to carry things and be organized as a team. Also working on finding ways to keep a creative and healthy work culture.

It’s a lot about making decisions, but experience helps you improve and things flow better.

What music do you listen to whilst designing?

Any advice for ambitious designers?

Practice, explore, be confident and trust your work. Every process is individual. Believe in your capacity to create and add value. Your vision is unique.

It is about climbing without forgetting that the most important part is the path. Yes, it's a lot of constant work, but when you turn around and see everything you've achieved, you’ll be proud of your growth. Everything requires effort, but it all gets rewarded. 

Anything you want to promote or plug?

Have a look at our work Hispánica.

You can follow me on LinkedIn and Instagram.

If you’re looking for collaboration, send me an email.