5 MEMBERS YOU NEED TO KNOW ACCORDING TO JON CONTINO
No one creates in a bubble. Your work is an amalgamation of everything around you: what you've seen, read, heard. Your work is you just as much as it is an homage to those that have inspired you. At Working Not Working, we're all about paying it forward and so for this new series, we're asking members to pay their respects to their creative heroes. We're starting with #1412 Jon Contino who has the distinction of being as generous with his time as he is with his talent. We asked Jon which Working Not Working members inspire him to add an extra hour to the 24 hour work day. Check out the lucky 5 below.
Growing up, who were your heroes (creative or otherwise)?
Anyone that I could rattle off as a stylistic influence is pretty hollow in my eyes to be perfectly honest. I grew up with my younger brother being born with Down syndrome, so I spent a lot of my developing years with my parents and grandparents. I watched them deal with surgeries, daily hospital visits, mortality scares, and whatever else came along with being born with a disability in the early 80s, so when my brother came out the other end in good shape, I looked to the four of them as true heroes. Stuff I saw on television was clearly fake and I got smacked with reality pretty quickly. The bonus to all of this is that the four of them were all very intelligent, creative people, so they introduced me to art, illustration, carpentry, engineering, and science at an early age. My obsessions with the topics obviously carried on throughout my life, but no one has ever eclipsed what they've done to shape me as an artist and a person.
Professionally and personally, who would you say has had the biggest impact on you?
My parents and grandparents were definitely the ones who helped shape me as a person, but god damn...growing up in a hospital and not living at home sure does have a big impact on a kid. My brother is an awesome, creative, intelligent person and I think it would be hard for anyone in my family to say that someone could possibly have a bigger impact than he did. He came in with a bang and is larger than life. It's tough for most people to say they've ever even met someone that can do that.
You're hosting a dinner party. Who are your dream guests, alive or dead?
Wow, that's a tough call. I'd probably only invite comedians. Maybe a president and a few baseball players. I'll pick a few, but the list could go on forever. Now, keep in mind, I'm going totally for the entertainment value here. I want to have a good time, ya know. Let's go with Rodney Dangerfield, Larry David, Ty Cobb, and John Adams. I mean...the fighting between Rodney Dangerfield and Ty Cobb alone would be amazing. Then I would imagine Larry David giving John Adams a hard time about being the second President of the United States and not the first. Actually, just make it a Curb Your Enthusiasm episode and I'm good.