Samantha Hahn.

“Here are my work spaces. We live in a brownstone apartment with limited space so my computer/printer/scanner is in one room and my drawing table is in another. I try to keep my desk neat but there are often stacks of paper that need to be filed or scanned. My drawing table is usually utter chaos. I have reference pictures, paints, scissors, brushes, blotting tissues etc. all over. I prefer neatness and order but sometimes I’m just a messy worker and there are paint splatters on everything within a few feet of the table. If I lived in a big Scandinavian flat that would be one thing but living and working in a small space forces me to get rid of old work to make way for new.”
Samantha Hahn’s illustrations feature delicate pen work and brightly colored inks. The New York Times referred to her watercolor work as “winsome”.  She lives in Brooklyn with her husband and toddler. Samantha was an honored guest in Berlin based Der Bilderklub. Her work was also featured through Working Proof. Prints and originals can be purchased through Gallery Hanahou, Shiny Squirrel and Little Paper Planes.Her illustrations for Glamour Magazine were recently chosen by American Illustration 28. Samantha has a BFA in illustration (Syracuse University) and MA in art education (Columbia University). For recent work and various art, design and style inspiration visit Maquette blog.

FROM YOUR DESKS: How do you work?
SAMANTHA HAHN: I teach 4 days a week so on those days I work at night and on the other day I work all day. I work on weekends too.
FYD: What is your design process?
SH: To find inspiration and use it as reference. Then I play with materials. I use the word play because watercolor is very variable and unpredictable so no matter what I know about it there is always an element of surprise. I relish that.
The women I gravitate towards as friends are ambitious, creative and insightful.
FYD: I read you (and your husband) were going to be “more content” in the moment. How is that going?
SH: It’s a struggle for us. We have lots of goals and very hectic lives. We are constantly juggling things. Time is short. We still plan to reach our goals but we’re aware that when one goal is reached another one takes its place so we have to take pleasure in the steps we’re taking and not just the end result. One thing that helps us is to talk about some good things that happened during our day such as a silly thing our son did or nice weather or a fun project…
FYD: Does Fashion Week still excite you or is everything derivative?
SH: I love looking at fashions and models. I find the whole spectacle of it a complete pastiche of art forms, from theater to design and then the reinterpretation or capturing of it through the lens of photographers and style bloggers. Fashion is derivative so is art. Isn’t everything?
I know about it there is always an element of surprise. I relish that.
FYD: The women you paint and draw are chic with a bit of edge.
SH: I just think the female form is beautiful. Don’t all artists? I think an expressive face can be the most beautiful and striking thing in the world. I’m drawn to faces and gestures that are a little different and edgy not the cookie cutter Barbie as reference.
FYD: What inspires you about women?
SH: I think women are inspiring for many different reasons. The women I gravitate towards as friends are ambitious, creative and insightful.

FYD: If Alice did revisit Wonderland do you think she would fall for the Hatter’s tricks?

SH: No. She’s much wiser now that she’s been around the block a few times.

For Samantha’s recent work and various art, design and style inspiration visit Samantha’s Maquette blog.

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