Illustrator & Designer Jon Contino

I discovered Jon Contino by following the work of Jessica Hische and Drew Melton (the typography world is very small). The first two things that resonated with me was the fact that he, like me, didn’t go to art school, and that he also used his musicianship as a passageway to his passion for design. As much as I’ve grown to love digital illustration and type design, I’m always the most drawn to analog aesthetics–and Jon prioritizes them in his work.

Jon Contino is an award-winning designer, illustrator, art director and self-professed alphastructaesthetitologist. His style is strongly inspired by contemporary street art, his native stomping grounds of New York, and the grit of hand-drawn type. He’s worked with clients like Ogilvy, Nike, Whole Foods, McSweeney’s, Target and The New York Times. He’s also an ADC Young Gun 9 winner to boot, and happens to possess a heartwarming Long Island-born accent.

Jon cites his family as being vital in governing his design and illustration aesthetic. His mother and grandmother happened to be artists, both supporting and assisting in his pursuit of his craft by bringing home reams of butcher paper and instructional drawing books (more about this in the wonderful Shoptalk interview here). He discovered that the lettering he was seeing in movie posters and baseball adverts still counted as typography–even at a very early age. It took me much longer to figure out that illustration and beautifully drawn words weren’t just for books–the marks of our handiwork can truly be found anywhere, if you just slow down and take the time to look.

As a teenager, Jon got his freelancer chops very early on. As a designer geek and drummer in a hardcore band, he was constantly relied upon by his band (and friends’ bands) to supply flyer designs, gig posters and the like. Soon enough, he realized that he could actually “make money at this thing,” and he was preparing invoices and freelancing by the ripe old age of 15.

In 2006, after working for a few different companies and design houses, he opened his own creative studio and has been working for himself ever since. He’s constantly turning pet projects into mini-businesses–most recently, he started up Contino Brand. And even amidst his successes, he’s learned the art of saying no for the sake of self-preservation.

Jon has spoken about how his preference for modern minimalism and his hand-drawn gritty aesthetic meets with a clash. That clash has governed a unique vision that brings the best of clean design and true-to-form drawing together. I’m enthralled by this intersection, and so clearly see the passion and determination that stands solidly behind Jon’s work. His personal history only continues to illuminate it.

Website

Facebook

Blog

Twitter

I also highly recommend his interview with The Great Discontent and his podcast interview with Shoptalk.

Posted by Rachel Frankel on 11/17/14 under artists,design,digital,pen/brush and ink,typography
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Do you make time to draw?

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Do you make enough time to draw? Some of us doodle at any opportunity we get. Yet there are also times when we get so swept up in daily doings that we don’t quite draw as much as we’d like to for fun and enjoyment.  Taking more time to doodle will not only keep your creative idea’s flowing , fill your sketchbooks with beautiful things but also make drawing fun feeling less like work.  So here are afew places you can sketch with ease, seize the opportunity  pick up that pencil and draw!

Places you can draw:

  • On the bus
  • On the train
  • In the car
  • On a rainy day
  • On the phone
  • In bed
  • At the park
  • In the garden
  • On your lunch break

Remeber, you should draw because the more you do draw the more those amazing ideas in your creative mind will meet the page for all to see.

Image by Illustrator Chuck Groenink you can find out more about his work here .

Posted by Kate Leonard on 11/16/14 under creativity
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Illustrator Victoria Topping

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It’s always refreshing to find an Illustrator who takes such a bold approach to their work as Victoria Topping, and the result is a continually evolving body of work that always holds plenty of surprises for the viewer.

Victoria Topping Website >>

Posted by Thomas James on 11/16/14 under artists
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Illustrator Susan Meyer

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Susan Meyer Website >>

Posted by Thomas James on 11/15/14 under artists
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Comics Illustrator of the Week :: Cameron Stewart

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Change can take a long time to happen. The mainstream comics market is no exception, but there have been some recent encouraging signs. Case in point, the newly redesigned, Doc Marten/iPhone sporting Batgirl by forward thinking creator Cameron Stewart, who co-writes, and sketches story breakdowns for the series. Stewart, a Canadian native, has been drawing comics for over a decade, and has worked with some of the most celebrated comics writers out there, including Grant Morrison, Ed Brubaker, and Jason Aaron.

In addition to the monthly Batgirl, he’s currently working on a comics sequel to Fight Club with writer Chuck Palahniuk, which he’s described as a dream project to be a part of.

Cameron Stewart won both an Eisner(2010) & Shuster(2009) award for his web comic Sin Titulo. You can find a lot more artwork to drool over at his website here.

For more comics related art, you can follow me on my website comicstavern.com - Andy Yates

Posted by Andy Yates on 11/14/14 under artists,comic,illustrationfriday,pen/brush and ink,weekly topics
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Illustrator Katie Daisy

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Katie Daisy Website >>

Posted by Thomas James on 11/14/14 under artists
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Pick of the Week for PAPER and This Week’s Topic

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Happy Friday!

We’re excited to announce this week’s topic, but first please enjoy the illustration above by Seaside Spirit our Pick of the Week for last week’s topic of ‘PAPER’. Thanks to everyone else for participating. We hope it was inspiring!

You can also see a gallery of all the other entries here.

And of course, you can now participate in this week’s topic:

THEATRE

Here’s how:

Step 1: Illustrate your interpretation of the current week’s topic (always viewable on the homepage).

Step 2: Post your image onto your blog / flickr / facebook, etc.

Step 3: Come back to Illustration Friday and submit your illustration (see big “Submit your illustration” button on the homepage).

Step 4: Your illustration will then be added to the participant gallery where it will be viewable along with everyone else’s from the IF community!

Also be sure to follow us on Facebook and Twitter and subscribe to our weekly email newsletter to keep up with our exciting community updates!

HAPPY ILLUSTRATING!

Posted by Thomas James on 11/14/14 under weekly topics
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The Detailed Illustrations of Mattias Adolfsson

 

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Not every Illustrator has the temperament required to create such detailed drawings like the one above, but Mattias Adolfsson seems to excel in this type of work.

Mattias Adolfsson Website >>

Posted by Thomas James on 11/14/14 under artists
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