We had the good fortune of connecting with Connor Tadao and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Connor, have you ever found yourself in a spot where you had to decide whether to give up or keep going? How did you make the choice?
I’d say, the first step to knowing if you should keep going or give up is assessing if you are doing something that you love and are passionate about. In the light that you are pursuing something that you love and are passionate about, I believe you should never really give up. You may have to re align certain things and adapt, but the path to success has an infinite amount of forms and there is no exact blueprint on how to get there, and there is no exact blueprint on what is “success”. That is something you can dictate for yourself. Find a way to continue doing what it is you love through whatever means, and that in it of itself, in my opinion, is a huge success. If it means working another job to support this then do it! After all, if you really want to do it and you love it, it wont feel like “extra” work. Don’t give up.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
We’d love to hear what sets you apart from others? There is a few things identified that sets me and the Flee Normality framework apart from others. The main thing is the constant unconventional mindset put fourth when it comes to creating- as it’s stated in the name “Flee Normality” this is something that is reflected in what I create and how I create, and what I use as my guide. It’s a lifestyle. In addition, having a self run brand that encompasses a framework consisting of a range of things like Photography, Videography, Graphic Design, Clothing Design, Clothing and Merchandise Manufacturing, Marketing etc. ran by one person is what I like to think, another unique trait. This is not the long term goal or something I could maintain with my overall vision in mind, but this has been a self created brand from top to bottom for the last 5-6 years. I like to showcase almost any genre of music and or creative through Photography, Artist Interviews and Music Videos. Being diverse is key to me. With this range, I like to think no one is in my lane, and instead I can find ways to collaborate or work alongside other amazing people and creatives.
what you are most proud of or excited about? I’m proud that Iam living my life doing what it is I chose to do out of pure love and passion. This in it of itself gets me excited!
How did you get to where you are today professionally? Was it easy? Dedication and a hard work ethic are vital. You also need to understand the industry that you are in so you can recognize and seek out opportunities. You can try to work with everyone and do everything but its not sustainable, so understanding your surroundings will help you be more efficient while navigating through whatever world it is that you are in. Was it is easy? To be honest it’s not something Ive really weighed up like that. I don’t feel like I’ve gotten to where I want to be fully yet, I’ am still on my journey, but the path so far has been extremely fun, spontaneous and life changing! Ill tell you when I get there!
how did you overcome the challenges? I stayed persistent, believed in myself and worked my ass off. When I’m faced with challenges Ill take time to asses and try to figure out the best way to overcome that challenge. I’ll exercise my options until the job is done. Sometimes, most times, it comes down to you having to take the hard way that you were wishing you could avoid haha.
What are the lessons you’ve learned along the way? Work as hard or harder than the people you look up to. Be humble and kind, talk to people, say hello, learn, ask questions, do what you can to show your talent but also how hard you are willing to work. Have patience and don’t fret if you feel like you’ve missed an opportunity, continue to have faith in what it is you are doing and focus on making everything thats to come better and better! Don’t get content.
What do you want the world to know about you or your brand and story? Normal efforts give you normal results. Be unapologetically you. Flee The Norm!
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Being based in Toronto, Id have to get us on the bikes, to me there is no better way to get around the city. A must stop would be Casa Loma for an early evening hangout and one of the better views of downtown Toronto (in my opinion) Once the sun starts to set we’d bike down to China Town/Kensington Market. Stop at one of the many great Pho or Chinese restaurants before riding our bikes to the top of the Kensington market car park. This is a cool place to chill at night in Toronto as you feel like you are on top of the city but in a very laid back and quiet environment (and secluded if you got some extra beverages). If its summer time, you cant really go wrong with a Jays game, Tuesday might be $1 hotdog night if you’re into that and you can more than likely find tickets for $20. Otherwise you have to see the Raptors play and witness 4KORNERS on the 1’s and 2’s, this is a non negotiable. Mahjong bar would be another great spot we would definitely be attending. LEMMON Stage concert series would be one our list of Music events we would be attending along with various other gigs that would be happening in the city at that time. If Haviah Mighty has a show you know we will already be pulling up to that! There’s so much good stuff happening in the city so if you come by make sure to hit me up!
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
There are so many people that have supported me along the way, and many that continue to do so. Someone who has been supporting me from the jump is my mother. Through thick and thin, blood, sweat, and tears she’s lifted me up and been my #1 supporter every step of the way.
The Blue photo taken of me photgraphing is credited to Scotty Geddes