- Associated Press - Sunday, February 19, 2017

MARINE CITY, Mich. (AP) - Kevin Niezurawski has yet to give up his day job - he’s an electrician - but the Marine City man is working on making art a second career.

“This stuff is funner,” he said.

Niezurawski creates custom metal fire pits, using a plasma cutter to cut out shapes and silhouettes ranging from lighthouses and deer to the Death Star from Star Wars.

He said he’s been making the fire pits for about a year.

“I do some wine bottle holders,” he said. “Anything custom metal cut or welded. The fire pits seem to be the biggest sellers because they’re unique.”

One of his fire pits, which shows the drawbridge in St. Clair, the Peche Island Lighthouse in Marine City, a Great Lakes freighter and a canoeist, was installed recently at the China Township Park on King Road near the Belle River.

The 36-inch globes are fabricated from the carbon steel end caps of 500-gallon propane tanks, Niezurawski said. He cuts the shapes out of the quarter-inch thick steel freehand with the plasma cutter.

“They’ll last 15 years-plus without rusting out,” he said.

The fire pits are one of a kind, he said.

“It’s custom made to exactly what you want, so your neighbor doesn’t have one,” he said.

Niezurawski said he asks his customers to select three areas of interest, such as hunting or nautical scenes. He’ll then sketch out a concept and present it to the customer before starting the metal work.

The Times Herald (https://bwne.ws/2lQmzHx ) reports that his fascination with art started at an early age.

“I’ve always been into art, ever since high school,” Niezurawski said. “I’ve always had a knack for art.”

Crafting fire pits is part of what he does at what he calls Illuminiez Studios - but it’s not the only artistic thing he’s into. Niezurawski also is becoming known around the Metro Detroit area as Detroit KRYO.

“It’s a costume I made,” he said.

The costume, which resembles a Transformer on steroids, is 9 feet tall and is covered with 2,300 LEDs, highlighting the Olde English “D” on its chest.

“I basically became the unofficial mascot of Detroit sports,” Niezurawski said.

The costume can spit sparks or emit fog from its arms. Detroit KRYO has been part of the Pine Groove electronic music festival at Port Huron’s Pine Grove Park in June.

He’s also been featured on “Live in the D” on WDIV Local 4.

“I did the home opener for the Pistons,” he said. “I get paid just to show up at events.”

Detroit KRYO also shows up at Anita’s Riverfront Grille in Marine City for the annual Light It Up Blue party to promote autism awareness.

Gannett Foundation grant helps pay for park improvements

“I’m always making something,” Niezurawski said. “I’m always doing something.”

___

Information from: Times Herald, https://www.thetimesherald.com


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