"Artists get a lot of their energy from their followers," says Matt Esfahani, owner, designer, producer and merchant of Matt Camron Rugs & Tapestries. "The more energy you get, the more you just want to keep producing." A former electrical engineer, Esfahani opened his first showroom in the River Oaks area of Houston in 1981. Based on a hobby and a whim, the Camron label - which now boasts numerous stateside locations, as well as European distribution - started small, using Esfahani's personal collection of antique textiles and rugs as its initial inventory. "When I started, I focused on fine collectible antiques, carpets, and kilims," he says. "However, after about 10 years, the market changed and that brought a new interest in production, color and craftsmanship." Focusing on modern reinterpretations of old designs, Esfahani evolved with the times, relying on quality born from technique, history and tradition in his exploration of patterns and colors. "I have to expose my clients to the latest trends," he explains, "because I'm responsible for expanding their awareness of all the possibiities."