Our Interview with Marcus Hay, Editor of Curio Magazine and Director of Studio Marcus Hay

Last week, we shared images from a shoot for Curio magazine that our prop stylist, Nyssa Zinn, worked on. (See that post here.) This week, we talked with Marcus Hay, Curio’s editor and the director of Studio Marcus Hay, Inc., about his time with Nyssa and how he came to be a standout name in the creative field.

We love the photos from the Artful City issue of Curio! Tell us about it.

I loved working with Nyssa on this issue. We’ve worked together many times over the years on commercial projects. I knew she’d deliver – Nyssa’s a San Francisco native and she personifies the spirit and energy of one of my favorite cities.

San Francisco prop stylist

Photographer: Naomi McColloch, Prop Stylist: Nyssa Zinn

When you were a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up?

I actually wanted to be a newsreader on TV for most of my childhood. I liked the suits and the slick hair! My auntie was a journalist on TV, so she inspired me. Alas, it was not meant to be.

How did the you get started in the creative industry?

I started at teenage girls’ fashion magazine in Australia as a junior graphic designer. It was my job to do a lot of the layouts, but I also had to keep track of the photographic library. Plus, I had a regular column in the magazine where my fashion illustrations were featured. I continued to work in fashion magazines like Elle, Vogue and Marie Claire until I crossed over to food and lifestyle titles where I could develop my interest in those areas.

What sets you apart in the industry?

I come from an editorial background and have always loved it. Since I had the experience, I decided to start my own online magazine, Curio, where I could once again tap into my love of producing editorial content along with other talented contributors. I also think that my understanding of composition and color, plus my love for objects, define my style.

San Francisco magazine

What’s your favorite part of your career?

Working with others. It’s the spirit of collaboration that I like best. When everybody is invested in a common goal and there’s pooled enthusiasm, unexpected and magical results occur. It’s a great feeling! I also love the creative process and when ideas are born.

What advice would you give someone who wants to get started in the industry?

Stick to your guns. Don’t compromise on your voice or what you bring to a project. Nobody works well when they have to water down or confuse their style. Of course you need to give the client what they want, but you also need to give them that little extra they were not expecting – they’ll delight in it.

Connect with Curio on Instagram at @curiomagazine.work and visit them online at Curio.work. Connect with Marcus on Instagram at @marcushay and Pinterest, and visit SMH, Inc. online at StudioMarcusHay.com. Connect with Nyssa Zinn on Instagram at @nyssazinn and Pinterest. Visit her website at NyssaZinn.com.

Founded in 2012, SMH, Inc. is a design-based studio that offers services including styling and art direction, event and interior design, and color and trend forecasting. Marcus has over 20 years of experience in advertising, branding, color theory, editorial, events and interior design, and today works with a variety of prominent and established brands. SMH, Inc. is based in New York City’s Chelsea but the team travels throughout the U.S. and around the globe to bring their fresh, creative solutions to clients.

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