David Mascha on graffiti, community and having pride in your work.

David Mascha is a Vienna based artist designer, creating beautiful letterforms, colourful conceptual art, and gorgeous geometrics. His work has a precise and almost clinical level of finesse and detail, whilst maintaining an eccentric and fun edginess. We were blessed to be able to catch David for a chat about his inspirations, next artistic ventures, and dream commissions. 

You make incredible letterforms. What first sparked your interest in typography?

Everything actually started with graffiti, that was at the end of the 90s. Even as a child I was always fascinated when I took the train and saw the painted walls. When I went to San Francisco, I walked the entire railway line and took photos of everything I saw in the way of graffiti. At home I started to trace and copying the letters. At some point I had found my tag name, bought spray cans and started painting. Through graffiti and street art I learned to deal with colours and shapes and how to create letterforms and combining them. 

What inspires you to create?

Last year’s #36daysoftype challenge sparked my creativity again, and from there I just kept going. After a year people are noticing me as a type and lettering artist, although the past 10 years I developed more of a 3D and isometric style but with a few type projects here and there. The multiple lines I'm using now have almost become a trademark of my work. It’s a good and satisfying feeling to be productive again, especially after a time focusing on other things.
The community is very important too, commenting, appreciating, liking and sharing the work, getting feedback, and also seeing other people and how they develop their style. Whether it was the Deviant Art times in the beginning more than 15 years ago, or when I joined the Depthcore Art Collective soon after, and now Instagram and the NFT’s that just came up, the community and connecting with other always had a huge inspiration and influence on me.


Your recent “colours” series was fun - you dripped paint over plastic animal toys. What can you tell me about the ideas and process behind it?

It was fun indeed. Originally the series was made for a relaunch of an Austrian printing company, at that time I was working at a small design studio in Vienna. It was used for ads combined with funny messages, but the photos itself had such a nice artistic feel too, so I felt posting them without any message on my Instagram page would be a good idea. The animals I got from a toy store, I used regular acrylic paint based on the CMYK colours, and mixed them with some water to get this nice drippy effect. After setting up the light and a little white box I started taking photos using a macro lens and a remote control so I could pour the colours over the toys at the same time.


What’s your favourite kind of commission to get, and what would be your dream commission?

I think its best to have enough creative freedom, like if someone says, I really like your style, just do something cool with it. In the end it always comes down to: would I really put that in my portfolio? I want to work on something I can be proud of, that challenges me and pushes me forward. In the past I’ve already had the pleasure to work on a couple dream commissions where i could just do whatever I want, it was this "let the artist do his job" thing.


What are your goals as a designer?

I mainly want to focus on creating art, in all kinds of media and whatever seems interesting to me. Also the current NFT hype pushed me into making more animations, which is challenging but also super fun and I learned new things. Seeing some of my pieces in motion, is super motivating, and definitely took them to another level. I just want to keep improving, pushing myself and trying new things.