100 Creatives

Phoenix Comedian Anwar Newton: 100 Creatives

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See also: Tempe Artist Mikey Estes: 100 Creatives

"An average day for me involves staring at glowing screens for about 75 percent of it and the other 25 percent is spent in search of a good burger," says Newton, who's also a pen-and-pencil artist and works as a film grip and gaffer.

Lucky for us, the 29-year-old manages to squeeze in time to tell jokes, too.

"I'm currently working on a comedy album with local stand-up comics to be featured in the NXOEED Album Art Hunt from artist James Hunt on October 3," he says. And on August 29, he'll perform at Comedy On Fire 17 at The Firehouse Gallery.

Maybe bring him a burger.

I came to Phoenix with my bloated debt and all of my worldly belongings in the back of a 1988 Honda Accord hatchback.

I make art because... I suppose being able to make people laugh could be considered a work of art or artful. I think I continue to try my hand at comedy because I think I haven't 100 percent failed at it yet, which, objectively speaking, is a pretty subjective way of looking at it.

I'm most productive when I'm actually on stage, which is how I try to spend any free evening I have. I treat it like I do my other two jobs as in I pretty much just show up and hope people don't notice I'm wearing the same shirt I wore yesterday.

My inspiration wall is full of post-it notes that say "You should probably start working on an inspiration wall." My comedic influences are George Carlin, Redd Foxx, Richard Pryor, and Louis C.K.

I've learned most from being alone and observing other people and seeing the weird things people do when they think no one is looking. Everyone is a weirdo just trying to hide their weirdness from all the other weirdos and seeing that play out is very entertaining to me. Also, one of the most important classes I've ever taken was a speech class in community college. It is probably the only college class from which I learned anything of any value.

Good work should always confuse people if it is actually good or not. Because ultimately that whether it is good or not doesn't matter, but the conversation of why you think it is "good" or "bad" is always interesting.

The Phoenix creative scene could use more people paying attention to it.

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Becky Bartkowski is an award-winning journalist and the arts and music editor at New Times, where she writes about art, fashion, and pop culture.
Contact: Becky Bartkowski