What does your practice mean to you?

Mentioned in this section:
Jonny Hart’s paintings

Craig: So that brings me to an interesting question, which is, Jonny Hart is an artist. So I started talking to him, and I met him, and I met him a couple times, and I’m like “Oh, this guy’s a painter, like with a capital P.” If you haven’t seen his work, I’ll link some stuff off of the show notes. Like a painter for realsies. So I’m thinking, “Well, this guy went to school for years, and he has this skill set.” And we’re gonna talk about anatomy. “This guy has a skill set with drawing and anatomy and does he look at his Parkour [00:06:30] differently? Like is there a cross between the art skillset and the Parkour skillset?” Or do you find that you really separate these two parts of your lives and, if you do separate them, why?

Jonny: I do tend to separate them, yes. People ask me all the time why I’m not painting action poses of my friends jumping …

Craig: The body in space, right.

Jonny: Mid-backflip, or whatever it may be. And the truth is, I couldn’t be less interested in doing something like that. The reason why is because in school, [00:07:00] I watched the progression of going from doing art purely because I loved it, I just did it to escape in my own world because it was the most fun I could imagine having, to having to do it because it’s a grind now. You’ve chosen to do this for a living. You show up every day. You put in the work and you do it when it’s not fun, when it’s not inspiring. And I needed something else after a day of being in the studio to unwind. Because it wasn’t drawing anymore. I didn’t want to come home and do more drawing or painting. [00:07:30] And I don’t like wasting time, so I wasn’t going to come home and play video games or drown myself in comic books or anime or whatever. Not that I’m putting any of those things down, it’s just, for me it felt like…

I don’t know, I’m a very obsessive person. I go all in when I get into something. So if I go down one of those rabbit holes, that’s gonna be most of my life. I’m gonna be playing Call of Duty eighteen hours a day or something. And I have no interest in doing that.

Craig: Don’t do that! So you’re looking at [00:08:00] Parkour like, this is something precious that you’ve found and I’m loving it.

Jonny: Oh my god, yes.

Craig: Do not want to mess this up by having it turn into my workaday life. So here in New York City, and in Brooklyn, I know that you’re teaching for The Movement Creative and I’ll talk about the class in a minute. But you teach for them, but you don’t have aspirations, or do you have aspirations of teaching and making a living off that? Is that bread and butter?

Jonny: I do not, no. I do it because I love it. I have another job, a survival job that I do just in a restaurant to make ends meet, but for coaching, I just [00:08:30] do it because I love it. And I only coach classes that I love coaching. I leave there feeling awesome. All those kids are like my little brothers and sisters. When I leave, my battery is recharged. I’m not drained at all.

So I love the fact that I don’t have to do it for a living, that I do it just because I love it. And it keeps it fresh and exciting for me, and, I’m sure, for the kids as well. And I still have this art thing that I do as well. I may go into academia or something at some point. But for now, I’m also painting and drawing on the side. I teach art, as [00:09:00] well. And I’m even starting to come up with classes now that combine the two, where I’m teaching drawing and anatomy and movement, all at the same time.