Designer Kevin Mazeski Interview
We interviewed artist Kevin Mazeski, NBC graphic designer by day, Instagrammer by night. We discussed topics ranging from how he came up with his unique username, kevinkilljoy, to what messages he wishes to send to his viewers. Read on to learn more about Kevin, the artist behind the screen!
No Sleep New York: Who are you and what do you do?
Kevin Mazeski: Kevin here! Born and raised in Queens NY. From 10-7ish I’m a Senior Designer at NBC specializing in print campaigns for TV shows. As any designer knows, at times personal work is the last thing anyone wants to do after working all day. I struggled with this concept prior to deciding that an Instagram post was the easiest/least I could do, which resulted in the aesthetic and content I now post.
NSNY: What is your background as an artist?
Kevin Mazeski: It’s always been art in one form or medium. I’ve always been creating, starting in fine art, and then finding my way into graphic design. I went to FIT for Graphic Design and started as a designer at Condé Nast falling under DETAILS magazine.
NSNY: So, what exactly inspired your Instagram username?
Kevin Mazeski: KevinKilljoy! Are you ready? Ok, SO, My Chemical Romance (RIP) was/is my favorite band, and when I signed up for Instagram, they had just put out their album “Danger Days: The True Lives of the Fabulous Killjoys”. As any fanboy would, I included “killjoy” in my handle. I’ve toyed back and forth about changing it to be more “professional”, but I think at this point, it’s safe to say that it will “carry on”, as I not only like the playful nature of it, but it also reminds me of where I started.
NSNY: Besides creating art, what are your favorite activities?
Kevin Mazeski: I’ve recently started to build furniture, mostly because it’s cheaper, and slightly because I couldn’t quite find exactly what I wanted when I last moved. If I can’t find what I want I usually try to make it; that’s an overarching theme with me. Thus far I’ve made an entertainment center, dining room table, benches, and a few other things held together by a prayer and an excess of nails. I think I enjoy being away from the computer and getting my hands dirty in a more tactile process, similar to my fine art days. I’m equally obsessed with all things plant-related.
NSNY: Who are your favorite artists?
Kevin Mazeski: Oh man, this question is brutal because my answer is everything and everyone–it changes by the hour. I’ve always really appreciated Basquiat, Yayoi Kusama, James Turrell, Matisse, Dan Flavin, and Jeff Koons. I’ve always been fascinated by pop culture and nostalgia, so I think that’s where a lot of my references come from. For example, my Lisa Frank sculpture.
NSNY: Do you sell your art or do any commission work?
Kevin Mazeski: I’ve recently become aware of the amount of DMs I’ve been receiving that I should start selling my work. I started this just as a way to motivate myself and produce personal work beyond my day job, so receiving such inquiries have really blown me away. I am beyond grateful for the support and more than anything I’m happy that others appreciate my work as much as I do. As a lover of interior design, and knowing what others’ art does for me and my home, it’s wild knowing someone thinks that way about my art and will allow it to be in their home/safe space.
NSNY: What project are you currently working on right now?
Kevin Mazeski: Oh man, I’m working on a few things at the moment. I have a tremendous stream of conscious noted on my phone that I keep adding ideas, whether in full or in fragments. I constantly pull from it and combine [ideas] when starting a new piece. I’d say overall. I’m trying to see how far I can go with the sculptures and coffee cups. I’m also trying to incorporate a wider color pallet beyond pink and blue going forward.
NSNY: What is the message that you want to send to your viewers?
Kevin Mazeski: If anything, just a different way to think; using what you have and just seeing where it takes you. Not everything has to make sense or have a larger purpose than what it currently is. “Why not?” is also something I ask myself a lot to avoid over-thinking (which comes far too easy for me) or before throwing out an idea I at first think might be stupid. Cactus and globes? Why not?!
NSNY: Where is your favorite place to create?
Kevin Mazeski: Any place is my favorite place as long as I have headphones. Music puts me in a trance and I totally forget where I am and how many hours have passed. I will say though I’ve found if I design in places I’m not so comfortable in, the work becomes slightly more interesting.
NSNY: Tell us some of your pet peeves as an Artist.
Kevin Mazeski: The thought that something should appeal to everyone; not everything has to appeal to everyone, nor should it. I’d rather someone really hate [my work], for someone else to really love it. Details, details, details. If you’re going to do it, do it. Oh, and Instagram eating up all of my resolutions.
NSNY: Anything else you’d like to add?
Kevin Mazeski: Hit me up – I’d love to hear from you & enjoy meeting fellow creatives!
I really appreciate the feature and honored to be your September 2019 Artist of the Month! You guys at NSNY are doing a fantastic job and it’s great to see other artists hustling & creating beautiful art.
To view more of Kevin Mazeski’s work, check out his website today.
To meet new Artists, check out our collection of artist interviews here on No Sleep New York!