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Good Company Podcast #2: Justina Blakeney

by Grace Bonney

It’s time for a new Good Company podcast! Last week I thought I’d be updating the show every other week, but once I got back in that (virtual) recording booth, I felt inspired and reinvigorated in a way I hadn’t anticipated. I had so much fun that I went ahead and recorded a brand new show and lined up seven more, so it looks like the Good Company podcast will now be a weekly show! Every Tuesday we’ll post a new episode with some of the most exciting and inspiring people in the creative community. These conversations will keep the discussions started in our new print magazine going on a more regular basis.

This week I’m talking with artist, designer, author and speaker Justina Blakeney. We talk about radical honesty, the importance of diversity in design and the power in proudly owning our achievements and confidence. My favorite moments of our time together were spent discussing the difference between perceived success and reality and how greater transparency online can lead to a better understanding of what it’s really like to run a creative business. I’ve shared some of my favorite quotes from Justina below, but you can listen to the full show at any of the links below. Thanks for listening! xo, Grace

Check out the second episode of Good Company on iTunes, Stitcher, Simplecast or Google Play (links below) and follow us on social media (@goodcompanyzine) and our website for more inspiration during the week.

*Thank you for listening! If you like the show, please consider rating and leaving a review on iTunes — it’s the most helpful thing listeners can do to support shows and help us get support on podcast platforms. To download a transcript version of the show, click here!

Portrait of Justina by Dabito of Old Brand New

Highlights from this episode:

“I feel like my style has remained freakishly consistent since I was like a little girl. I’ve always loved house plants, always, and in like a sixth sense kind of way.” (06:58)

“At the heart of what I do or what I try to do is to really make home be a reflection of who you are and […] what that means to you because I feel like that’s a place where you should totally be able to grow, and feel free to be yourself, and explore what that means to you and your family.” (09:49)

“Having a small team, you really have to relinquish ownership over certain aspects of what you’re doing because you really can’t do it all. We really focus in on our strengths, and then we support each other where needed.” (13:11)

“There is really no disconnect between who I am offline and who I am online. I’m very transparent. That’s just who I am, so that’s it. You get all of me.” (18:46)

“Sharing true stories of what’s going on is important because everybody creates stories in their heads about what things are like. And I think when you are able to dispel some of those myths for people, they feel better about themselves.” (19:42)

“When people find their self-confidence, they’re unstoppable. It’s really like a secret power. I think celebrating your wins is showing the world your confidence. You’re not being boastful. You’re saying, “Look. Look what I’ve done, and this is amazing, and I’ve had help, and thank you to everyone who’s helped me get here, and this is something that you could achieve, too.” (22:41)

“I think it’s okay to remind people that they need to consider diversity and inclusion. And I don’t think it should only fall on people of color or women of color to remind people that diversity should be a thing.” (31:40)

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