T Lo Interviews MMAS Jonathan
You won Fan Favorite. Congratulations, Jonathan. That’s awesome!
You know what? In all honesty, if I couldn’t win the show, it would be Fan Favorite. If they were both for no money, I would want Fan Favorite, because that’s the whole of America voting. To me, that made the whole thing kind of bittersweet, but I’ve got no regrets. I want to thank every person that voted for me.
It’s kind of ironic because you said that your real personality didn’t come across on the show.
I think about 60, 70% of my personality came across. Obviously, everyone has gotten their slightly crazy side and I was aware that my family and my friends were going to see this, it was the first time I was on television, you know, I wanted to make sure I didn’t make a total ass of myself [laughs].
When did you first start modeling?
I started modeling probably about two years ago, very lightly modeling. I was actually introduced to an agent at a bar of all places. I was with a friend of mine and he introduced me to his agent and she asked me if I was interested in being represented. I asked her what I had to do and she told me it was photographs, castings…she kind of explained the industry to me and it sounded like a little fun. That’s how I got started.
Now, was that here or in England?
That was here in a bar in LA called Cabo Cantina.
How did you meet your wife?
I was at The Grove in LA and I saw this very pretty girl walking to a Coffee Bean. She would have to be breathtaking for me to pluck up enough courage to go up to a complete stranger and I didn’t even drink coffee at the time. So, I sort of wandered into this Coffee Bean, I was with a friend of mine, and got closer to the cash register and gave her this kind of compliment that I could only come up with: “I like your boots”. She had these cool leather boots on.
Well, in LA, she probably thought you were gay.
[Laughs] I know. I hadn’t been in LA for long. So I asked for a Venti Mocha Frappuccino, I had no idea what I was doing there, she started laughing, we started talking and the rest is history as they say.
She seems very supportive of your career and your goals.
She’s incredibly supportive. Behind every good guy there’s even a better woman and vice-versa. It’s a testament to our relationship that she’s comfortable with me having to often kiss other girls or be completely naked for a photoshoot.
Speaking of naked shots, you became an Internet sensation when a ton of sites started to post your smoking-hot nude photographs taken by Rick Day. What was like working with Rick Day? He’s a great photographer.
Ricky is one of my favorite people in the whole world. Not only is he a fantastic photographer, he’s got this vision; he could make a grapefruit or a pineapple look sexy. He’s got this innate ability to create these smoldering images. I would love to say that it’s all me, but he gives such wonderful directions. I haven’t worked with that many photographers who have been able to really manipulate your body in a way that it will look the best you could ever look. He’s an artist and a magician.
Does your wife get jealous of all the attention you get from men and women?
The funny thing is that…I have a Facebook page and a lot of people now say “My goodness, your wife is so beautiful, she’s so lucky, you’re so lucky,” so she’s getting 50% of all the admiration. It’s great for me that any fan of mine really appreciates my wife as well.
Moving on to the show, you sounded disappointed that you didn’t win in your exit video. Are you still disappointed?
That’s a tough question. I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t disappointed. I did the best that I feel that I could’ve done over the period that I was away and I felt like I had a tremendous amount of consistency and praise from the judges. So to get, as they say in England, pipped at the post, it was definitely upsetting and disappointing. It’s definitely not dissuading, though. It hasn’t caused any resentment to me whatsoever. If anything, it’s made me a little bit stronger. You know, in the modeling industry there’s tough competition out there. If you cut out to be a serious model, you ought to take the praise and the rejection in stride.
Your shots, your walk were always near perfection, you were always consistent. Do you think that turned the judges off?
I don’t know, maybe I peaked too soon. I was so consistent, yeah, the judges wanted to see something new and we were limited. I wasn’t able to sprout wings and fly on the runway, but I did the best that I could, so maybe I came out too strong too soon. I feel that Sandhurst fell to the same fate as that as well whereas Branden showed this, sort of, inexperience to this development.
The judges had a very tough decision to make. The three of you were very good in your own way and only one could be the winner.
To be honest, I wouldn’t have liked to have been at the judging panel, having to decide that. It was a testament to the fact that three guys with three great looks, all very good in their own specific way, so yeah, no doubt a tough decision for the judges.
What was your favorite photoshoot?
It was probably the underwater shoot. I wasn’t in love with my picture, I was actually later on told that that picture might be used in the photographer’s book. The photoshoot was something so brand new, so different than everything I’ve experienced in the modeling world before. I think it probably left one of the greatest impressions on me.
How was your reaction when you received the visit from your wife and kid on the show?
When Branden’s mom showed up, Sandhurst’s sister…I was think in the back of my mind “my wife better bloody show up.” We had been cooped away from the rest of the real world for quite some time. It was massive for me to be able to see my wife and kid. So much relief came over me, very calming influence.
How much time did you spend with them? Watching the episode, it looks like you guys spent less than a day with the family members.
That was it. It was a matter of hours. They showed up, we got ready, we went to the exhibition of all the photographs of us and after that, kiss, hug, and goodbye, and then on to the finale. I would’ve loved to have had it longer but if I had had that much longer I think I would’ve become too distracted.
Do you miss your long hair?
And why in the world did you decide to have your hair dyed?
You know when people are in court and they plead temporary insanity? I think that’s probably what I was dealing with. All jokes aside, when you’re there and the judges are constantly saying that they need to see something new, that you’re so vanilla, not pushing the boundaries…every shot I’m smiling or I’m showing a slightly crazier side and they kept saying that wasn’t still enough, so I felt that I had to show them that I wasn’t afraid of changing my look up. It wasn’t the right decision, but it showed strength of character, I felt. It was changed back the day after, but the issue with changing it back so quickly, as I’m sure you can see, my eyebrows and my hair still had this very orange-y tint to it. It has grown out now, thank goodness.
You had the most ripped body in the competition. How much do you work out?
It will upset you to know that I don’t work out that much.
We don’t believe you.
Honestly. Living in LA, I juggle modeling and a little construction company, sort of a handyman construction company I run. For all intents and purposes, all day every day is the equivalent of working out. I’m pulling concrete, hammering up dry walls, lifting 2 by 4s, it sort of stretches your body in so many different ways and that is actually how I maintain my physique and then I’ll probably go to the gym, let’s say, three times a week. On top of that I have my push-up regime: 100 in the morning, 100 in the evening, and then, 60 sit-ups in the morning and 60 in the evening .
So, what have you been doing lately?
The modeling right now is going incredibly well. The exposure and the lessons I’ve learned from the show, I’m much more comfortable in front of a camera. I’ve done a bunch of underwear campaign and catalogues. Hopefully I’ll start building towards my own 100 thousand dollars as opposed to the prize money.
You’re very professional and you have everything to build a great career as a model.
Thank you; that’s how I wanted to come across. It’s a job, it’s a very fun job, but it is still a job. It adds a little bit more discipline when you have a family, you have to book the job because if you don’t it’s very difficult to pay the rent. Yeah, there is a little bit of extra pressure, a little more direction.