Name: Margaux Brooke
Photograph by: Greg Swales
Passion, grace, and poise don't begin to describe the talent of today's Monday Muse, Margaux Brooke. She is effortlessly beautiful and talented at what she does; but even more, her words are incredibly encouraging to all who have the pleasure of hearing them. She has been just about all over the globe, yet still she seems to see excitement in the everyday. She's the kind of inspiration that keeps you going, even when the going gets tough. She's an artist, alright, and we had the pleasure of getting to know her--meet Margaux Brooke!
Hey Margaux, do you consider yourself an artist? What kind?
Definitely, I dabble in all different kinds of art. I would say I’m most well known for being a model. But I also enjoy drawing, acting, and writing, which is probably my most personal form of art.
How did you get your start?
I was 9 years old, living in Roswell, Georgia. One day my mom heard an ad on the radio for an agency looking for child models. She brought me in and the rest is history, as they say. I was never pressured into modeling. I genuinely loved it when I was little. They usually just dress you in your outfit and then tell you to have fun, and they capture some great photos from that. If only it were that easy now-a-days, haha!
Where do you live or where do you split your time between?
I would say my home is Los Angeles, or currently Orange County. I am planning to move to LA this summer, but really I am bi-coastal. I spend a few months out of the year in New York, which is my favorite city to work. I also work in London, occasionally, which is always a fun time. I learn so much from my travels.
Where are you from?
This is an interesting question for me. I was born in Ventura, California, but I moved to Georgia when I was 2 years old and lived there until I was 11. Then I moved to Costa Rica from age 12-15, and then I moved back to California, where I have lived ever since. So all of my growing years were split between three different places. But I usually say I’m from Georgia, but identify my home as LA.
Photograph By: Kristian Shuller
What/ who inspires you?
So many people inspire me, I don’t even know where to begin. My mom is my greatest inspiration. She provided such an amazing life for me, and did so as a single mom from the age 12 years old and on. I owe a great deal of my happiness to her. She got me into modeling, drove me to my castings until I was nearly 17, and always supported me. Coco Rocha is my modeling mentor, she’s taught me so much, mostly about how to deal with haters in this industry, and to be confident. She’s only a year older than me but has accomplished so much. I love her and her husband and now her new baby Ioni. They’ve always been so kind to me and have remained my friends until this day. As far as a writing inspiration, I’m obsessed with Patti Smith, I could only dream of writing like she does. I feel so much when I read her words, and I hope to meet her one-day in the future. Other than that, I would just say life inspires me. I can be walking down the streets in NYC and feel all sorts of inspiration from the weather to the architecture to the people. Traveling is inspiring.
What does our slogan “Carry Hope” mean to you?
Photograph By: Ben Cope
I think it reminds me to never give up. Even when things seem impossible and hopeless, and you feel utterly lost in life or your work, there is always hope. Sometimes all it takes is patience and perseverance, other times it takes a lot of hard work, but I think as long as you keep fighting, there is hope.
Do you think education is important? Do you think it always has to come in the form of formal training?
Yes, I definitely think education is important, but no I am the last person to believe it comes in the form of formal training. Sure if you want to be a doctor, or a lawyer, you should go to school to get those degrees, but when it comes to art, I don’t think a formal degree is necessary. I’ve completed two years of college and I’m not sure if I will ever finish. I have been modeling, and working, and teaching myself so much about the fashion industry, marketing, and how to brand myself. My dad asked me, “Where did you learn all this?” I told him, I taught myself. I think school can provide a great foundation, but sometimes you just need to learn on your own.
Photograph By: Jens Ingvarsson
Well writing is probably my biggest hobby. I’d love to write a novel one-day. It will probably be fiction, but for now, my writing is just for me. I also love online gaming, which I guess is pretty unorthodox for a model, or so I’ve been told. I play this game called League of Legends, super fun and addicting. But I’ve always been more of a tomboy.
Favorite song you are listening to?
Right now I’ve really been in to “Octa Hate” by Ryn Weaver. It’s a song about love, or rather, about losing love, which I’ve recently gone though myself, and I’m kind of on road to the recovery right now. So this song has kind of been my anthem. One day at a time right?
YES. One day at a time, absolutely. Thank you, Margaux, for carrying hope and caring enough about education to share your story with our readers.
How are you inspired? Share in the comments below.
Happy Monday, everyone!
Written by Grace Mueller
Spring 2015 Intern
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World, meet Barbara Dieuseul. Barbara is a hardworking wife and mother of four who lives in the hills of Opisa, between a large market, called Fèyobyen, and the mountainous region, called Tit Montay.
Barbara wakes early each morning so that she can go out into the fields above her home and collect edible greens with the hopes of selling them at the market for somewhere between $1.25 and $2.50 per day. At this level of income, Barbara’s greatest concern for her family is putting food on the table, while education remains something of a dream for her children. Although it would cost only about $30 per year to put her children through school in Boukankare, the cost is simply too far out of her reach.
Barbara describes a feeling of despair at her inability to send her children to school, saying "when your children are crying at your feet, it breaks your heart… and [I would] like to help [my] children learn something, so they won't be humiliated down the road."
We’re proud to say that Barbara’s family, and many more like hers, will be among the first we are reaching at ESPEROS. We’d like to offer our sincere thanks to everyone who is helping lift this burden that's been weighing on Barbara and her family. We can’t wait to see the progress that follows!
It’s difficult to describe the recent trip to Haiti. It was heart-breaking. It was inspiring. It was humbling. More than anything, it was necessary. Necessary to meet the families we’re helping, to put ourselves in their shoes, if only for a moment, and to hear that what we’re offering is what they need.
It’s not easy to witness the level of poverty the families we’re serving find themselves living in, but it’s incredible to see the progress they are making through the guidance of our partners at Fonkoze. As I’ve mentioned before, we’re beyond excited to be working with Fonkoze. After seeing their work firsthand, it’s nearly impossible for me to imagine a better partner for us as we work to cultivate a sense of hope in the communities in which we work. All our time spent alongside Fonkoze was great, but perhaps no experience was more poignant to me than our visit with a CLM member living in the outskirts of Mirebalais.
Rose Berline’s current home. This small compound, comprised of two huts, is shared with her mother and father, two of her siblings, and her four children.
This particular family lives in a secluded area in the countryside, far removed from modern amenities like electricity and running water that we so often take for granted. For all they lack, though, this family is making it. Rose Berline, a single mother of four, explained that it was exceedingly difficult to make ends meet before being brought in as a member of Fonkoze. Now, about halfway through the CLM program, that’s starting to change. She has taken her initial grant of two goats and turned it into what feels like a small army of bearded four legged animals, using some for trade with other families in her community and the rest to provide meat, milk, and other essentials for her own family. She will soon be moving into a house of her own, with a tin roof provided by Fonkoze, just ahead of the rainy season. As she stands under the roof, the walls waiting to be built, her sense of pride is palpable. We ask if her children are in school and her face lights up as she responds, “Wi. Yo nan lekòl la” – yes, they are.
Rose Berline, standing beneath the awning of her soon-to-be home.
As I’ve reflected on this since returning, I’m continually amazed by the fortitude of Rose Berline and of women like her who are part of the CLM program. Despite the inherent difficulties in rising up from extreme poverty, these women have a stunning resolve to be successful and provide for their families. Once they’ve been given a small slice of hope, they cling to it with all they have. Failure, for them, is not an option.
Nope. Not letting these kids down.
Since arriving back in the country, we’ve been working tirelessly to prepare for our soft launch the second week of July and we’re working to secure new manufacturing processes for mass production in the near the future to accomodate demand. To those of you who have been patiently awaiting the arrival of your ESPEROS pre-orders, we cannot tell you how much we appreciate your understanding as kink after kink has popped up. Without you, we wouldn’t be able to do what we do and, well, we’re just going to say it: we love you. Thank you for your patience. Thank you for your support.
(Originally posted 25 June 2012)