Interview with artist Samantha Redfern

Samantha Redfern is a British artist based in Singapore. She paints abstract florals, botanicals, and cityscapes inspired by Singapore. Samantha loves that she can put her imagination and creativity onto canvas and bring it to life.

Samantha, tell us about yourself.

I’m a 38-year-old mother of three and a full-time artist. I’m a British citizen living in tropical Singapore and loving every minute. I am a big nature lover and find most of my inspiration from going out and exploring.

How did you get started as an artist?

I’ve always loved art and it has always been a part of my education. I studied a BA (Honours) in Fine Art in Bath, England. Art took a back seat for a while, but now it’s a huge part of my life. I run my own art business here in Singapore, working with several galleries as well as having my own.

What kind of art do you make?

I am an abstract artist. I actually started off painting portraits, mostly. Portraits of people’s dogs or children. Then I moved to painting florals, botanicals, and cityscapes inspired by Singapore. Over the years my artistic journey has led me more and more into abstract expressionist art. Abstract art requires imagination, and I love that I can put my mind and my creativity onto canvas and bring it to life.

What do you love about your work?

For me it’s freedom. Freedom to express myself and my emotions. It’s also the freedom to escape reality and delve into my imagination. I find experimenting with art and different mediums exciting. I’m not afraid to try new things creatively.

What challenges have you had while developing your art business?

The biggest struggle is funds. I had someone laugh when I said being an artist is really expensive. But it is. At least I think it is!

And now more than ever it’s not just about painting, it’s about social media. Creating content as well as art. Instagram has been amazing but it’s time consuming, and as a mother to three also running my own business it’s a juggling act. I don’t want to be glued to my phone, but I do need to be present and engage with my audience.

How do you promote your art?

I have found the internet an amazing way to promote my art. I used to have a personal Instagram account where I probably posted one photo per month. Then I was told that Instagram was incredibly important in building my art business, so I had to learn how to do that.

Then I created my website, which was a very exciting step for me. I continue to learn. Getting exposure on Instagram is hard, and I do struggle with reach. I believe using Canvy has been very helpful in creating professional and visually appealing content for my Instagram followers.

What made you choose Canvy app for displaying your work?

I came across Canvy on Instagram and started the free trial. I was incredibly impressed with the diversity of the rooms and I have found it very easy to use.

What I love most about Canvy is the ability to change colours — even on items such as cushion covers! I can create the perfect room to showcase my artwork.

We know the power of being able to effectively display your artwork. How did it feel to be able to make those images and use them for your business?

I think it’s extremely beneficial to be able to show people what an artwork looks like in context. It shows them the size and overall vibe of a piece. I think art brings a room to life, and Canvy app helps me show that.

What’s coming up next in your business?

This year I’ll continue to focus on creating. Unfortunately, art events and exhibitions have been sparse due to COVID. However, I am making the most of what I do have, which is access to my studio and access to an audience online — making connections and friendships with potential collectors and other artists via social media.

What drives your creativity?

Why do I create? I do it because I need to. For my own self worth and for my mental health. When I wasn’t creating, something was missing. When I got back to making artwork, I knew I could never let it go again. I was finding myself, my identity. I can share that with people and make connections. When someone connects to a painting I’ve made, it's such a special thing.

Any advice for people who want to explore abstract art?

Yes! If you want to explore abstract art but perhaps aren’t quite feeling brave enough, just try it. It’s only paint, it's nothing to be afraid of. Create from your soul. Experiment and have fun. Even if it’s for your eyes only, we never know unless we have a go.

You can find Samantha Redfern and her fine art here: