The Marie Hunter brand is built upon one philosophy, “Confidence Speaks Volumes”. Confidence by definition is a feeling of self-assurance arising from one's appreciation of one's own abilities or qualities. In our new series, we will be featuring what I like to call the Marie Hunter Modern Muse, a woman who is a guiding spirit and source of artistic inspiration in life and business.
This month we’re featuring Brittany Johnson, Founder of Reverie Photography and Reverie Home Collective. I met Brittany many years ago when I was in beauty school and she was the front desk coordinator. Since then, we’ve followed each other on social media and to say I’m amazed at how she balances being a mother, wife and entrepreneur would be an understandment. I had to the opportunity to ask Brittany 5 questions and here is what she had to say.
Q+A with MH Modern Muse Brittany Johnson
Q: Mother, Owner of Reverie Photography and now Reverie Home Collective, what was the defining moment that made you want to launch your new blog?
A: After having my third child, I struggled through some postpartum anxiety. My thought patterns were pretty destructive and inhibiting, and I knew I needed to do something about them. I read a book titled, "What To Say When You Talk To Yourself" and it just about blew my mind. I identified negative thoughts and stopped entertaining them, and allowed myself to believe that I could do the things that I was dreaming about. One of them was Reverie Home Collective. I have desperately wanted to share my food allergy tips and recipes, our DIY projects as we update our house, awareness as we work in our community, and all of the parenting lessons we've learned through our three boys. I decided that, with the help of my sister, it was time to launch the blog. It became the creative outlet that I didn't know I needed...and while I may have to take it slower than I'd like for a bit, I'm so excited to keep building it and seeing where it goes.
Q: How do you balance being a mother of 3 while still running your photography and blog businesses?
A: Haha, was it smart to start my blog on top of my photography business with my youngest being 6 months old? Maybe not. Finding the time for everything is one of my biggest challenges. But I'm okay taking the time I need to slowly grow my businesses while I raise my kids. As long as I'm growing and creating, then I feel healthy and balanced. I am equal parts nurturing and ambitious. I have to be able to indulge my motherhood while also indulging my love for work. But how? One thing I swore from the beginning was that my blog would not control their childhood. I would not make them go out and play in perfect clothes and in the spot I wanted just to get a magical photo or story to share. I was going to let them be the magic on their own, and if it worked out for the blog, then that's great. Also, I'm a big believer in involving your kids in your grown-up stuff. My seven year old helps me set up before every photo session and he runs down to help me clean up after. My 3 year old helps me chop potatoes for dinner. Incorporating them as much as I can is the way I navigate both worlds.
Q: Who are 3 people that inspire you and why?
A: I LOVE this question. I am inspired by so many people. Here are just a few:
1. Dalia Mogahed, Director of Research at the Institute for Social Policy and Understanding, for her passion and commitment to education and social awareness. I just saw a lecture she gave at the UW and she was an incredible speaker, a powerful presenter, and a force for advocacy and change. If you are interested in learning more about the Muslim community, her book, Who Speaks for Islam: What a Billion Muslims Really Think, is a fantastic read. "I can tell you character traits I admire and work to develop in myself - perseverance, self-discipline, courage to stand up for what is right even when it is against one's friends or one's self." -Dalia Mogahed
2. Fred Rogers, host of Mr Roger's Neighborhood. I'm not sure there is a better human that has ever walked this planet. I am a far better parent and person than I would have been without Mr. Rogers, and it's why I still have my kids watch him regularly. He is the opposite of every other kid's program out there today...slow, intentional, and deep. He talks about really difficult things sometimes (divorce, death, violence), but in a way that is safe for children to digest. I just love him."Knowing that we can be loved exactly as we are gives us all the best opportunity for growing into the healthiest of people." -Fred Rogers
3. Nadia Murad, human rights advocate and winner of the Nobel Peace Prize for tirelessly advocating the plight of the Yezidi people and her work to end the use of sexual violence as a weapon of war. “This world was not only created for you and your families. We also want life, and it’s our right to live it.” -Nadia Murad
Q: What makes you feel most confident?
A: When I make my own decisions without worrying about other people's expectations. Whether it's in how I dress, how I communicate, what projects I launch at work, what opinions I form, how I renovate my home...I prefer to throw out the expectations and just think about what I think will be magic. What will be meaningful. What feels true to me.
Q: What are your must have Marie Hunter products and why?
A: Your Leather and Suede candle is the best candle I've ever smelled. I've always preferred what are often marketed as "manly scents" but have never appreciated when those are designed for men. Your candle is the exact scent I love, and style-wise, it fits my minimal, neutral style to a T. I am on the waiting list to pick up your charcoal soap because I KNOW that it's going to be a new fave of mine.