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Jon Contino

Tim McCarthy

Jon Contino is one of my favorite designers out there right now.  I stumbled across his brand CXXVI Clothing Co. back in 2008, bought a t-shirt, and have been following and admiring his work ever since. 

I believe Jon is leading a style that I like to call The Denim Collar Movement. His designs and hand lettering are masculine and rough around the edges, but also have a modern contemporary feel. From his hand lettering to his distressed textures, his rolled-up sleeves-do-it-by-hand-and get-dirty gives authenticity to his designs. A lot of designers try to fake this look in their work (I'm guilty), but Jon is the real deal and he's been a huge inspiration to me.

It's no surprise that his style has been able to translate to the world of sports, even an unlikely one like running. Below are some examples of the hand lettering he did for the Nike We Run, an event that took place in more than 25 cities and included almost a million runners.

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This is a bit dated but he also did the branding, illustrations and designs for Nike's VCXC running in Van Cortland Park in the Bronx.