this is all about me that you'll even need to know


Juán Sebastián Aravena Ponce de León
It's pretty simple, my father is Bernardo Aravena Echaurren and my mom is Ana Maria Ponce de León Vergara. I have a first and last name like everyone else, my father's last name and my mother's last name. Here's the catch, no one has ever called me Juán, not my parents nor any of my grandparents. My parents were Catholic and Hispanic, so I was destined to have a long name.

My father chose Sebastian because it is after his uncle Roberto Antonio Sebastian Matta Echaurren (yup, more long names). He was known as simply Matta. He is known in the Art community and is one of the fathers of Surrealism along with Salvador Dalí and Pablo Picasso. Matta passed away in November 23, 2002. I never had chance to meet him.

I don't use my mom's last name because Americans are unable to understand that Ponce de Leon is one name and not three. Aravena is too hard to pronounce. Actually there are three different ways that I don't mind. a-ra-ve-na, a-ra-vee-na or a-ra-vey-na. But since I've gotten so many a-va-re-row and a-vo... (people usually pause and give up at this point) that I just go by Sebastian. I do feel sorry for my wife, since her first name is a bit more common than mine, she has to tell people her last name. :-D

stuff that I do:

Sebastian Aravena (vert)
Me, Sebastian Aravena (on wake, skate, surf, snow, mtb)

marital status:

Married for 16 years :-D


I never really knew what I wanted to do when I grew up. Still don't. I always had a feeling that I would be a commercial artist of some sort. Be it graphic design or illustration. I really wanted to be a photographer but I didn't want to do any fashion or portrait work. Then while I was in art school I took a Photoshop class. It was a lot easier, faster and cooler than working in a darkroom. So I decided to study computer art. My first job out of college was for an ad agency. Big surprise. I was the director of internet and multimedia. I learned a lot but the pay wasn't great. I now work as a web developer. I'm mostly responsible for creating the look and feel for web sites, presentations, kiosks and any other multimedia project that is thrown at me. I also prototype projects and write code. I sometime see projects from start to finish, but being one of three designers in my department and the only web developer, I get stuck doing a lot. I try to stay fresh by working on side projects, but parenting and life gets in the way some times. To sum it up, I'm an artistic geek with a life.

time spent on earth:

I was born Thursday, July 8th, 1976. Minus 7 days that I was in a coma. Right now I'm 15815 days old.

what does vertseven mean?

When I was in high school I was known as vert. This was my tag (graffiti) and I was referred to as vert by those who knew my identity. As a writer I often enjoyed to play with words, their meaning and the way that they are spelled in a graphical manner. Sometimes a writer would enhance their name by adding "one", "er", or "ster" to the end of their tag. IE: vertone or vertster. I didn't like the usual suffixes, so I decided to add my favorite number (seven). Vertseven flowed nicely, so it stuck. Besides vertseven has the same number of characters as Sebastian (9).

what I like:

Animals, art, baseball, bicycles (all of them), canoeing, computers, fishing, gadgets, gardening, golf, motorcycles, movies, music, rock climbing, skateboarding, snowboarding, softball, SUP, surfing, The Simpsons, television and toys.

what I dislike:

Chocolate ice-cream, coffee, feet, sculptures, and small talk.

who I live with:

Colleen (wife person), Kai (son person), Daphne (daughter person), Gambit (dog and my shadow), Max (cat in every way), and Merlin (cat/part-time ninja).