Samira - Ink and Brown Paper
Today we've got one of the most incredible artists I know...Samira! She's the woman behind Ink and Brown Paper and is our first international guests...yippee!! Residing in the state of Nebraska, USA, Samira loves to paint gorgeous women usually surrounded my plants and has a real jungle feel to them. When I found her (yes again on Instagram), I was obsessed from the get go, with her empowering women prints and use of bright colours. Even though we're on different continents, she's been a huge support with my lil biz and when I ever get to the States again...Nebraska will be my the first stop!
Kick off ya shoes, grab a cuppa and enjoy hearing from my Caribbean buddy, Samira.
Hey lovely, tell us a little bit about yourself! And where are you based?
What do you do? When did you start and how did you come to do what you do?
Is this currently a side hustle or your full time job? And because I'm nosey, what was your previous job?
I've only ever worked as an artist. From briefly selling my art to finance my college tuition (college dropout here) and hustling on the side whilst my short lived career in early childhood education. I got married young and was always momming around the clock and since moving to America I was unable to work for years. However I've always made my way back to creating art.
What do you primarily use for your work? Paint, digital, ink? Why is it your preferred medium?
Paint. I love all the things so I experiment a lot. I started with doing my illustrations in watercolor and ink, hence the name ink & brown paper but I've really enjoyed gouache paints. For it's bright saturated finished that works wonderful with the colors and tropical style of my work.
In ONLY 3 words, how would you describe your art?
It's. A. Vibe.
I paint today's modern woman doing mundane things like drinking coffee or lounging with a book. I paint a diverse array of women whilst incorporating a tropical feel with plants/animals. I love that house plants are having a moment because it's my favorite thing to paint.
When in your life did you have the "I've made it" moment. I want to hear your biggest highlight in your biz so far!
Where do you draw inspiration from?
I draw inspo from everywhere around me but mainly my roots, where I'm from. I'm Latin Caribbean so I love painting colorful patterns and prints, the women I paint are mixed race, the plants are the tropical climate plants from my childhood. My culture is rooted in the colors and subjects I choose to illustrate.
Alright, skies the limit...who/what is your dream brand collab? What would it be?
There is no dream collaboration, I just love working with other strong women focused brands and my dream is to see my work printed/published. A book cover, or package art with my illustrations or designs on em'. I would honestly flip to see my artwork on an item on the shelves of my grocery store or a book store. I could just imagine the excitement.
So, I'm a massive celeb lover and get star struck easily....Have you ever had your art purchased/liked or commented on by someone famous? We need names 👏🏽 and 👏🏽 details. If not, who would you love to have your art hanging in their house?
Oh my goodness, I don't know what I'd do to have my art hanging somewhere in a celebs home or space. Do reality stars count? A master chef contestant follows me and shared my work 😄.
When you’re not doing your art, what would we find you doing?
I'm a mama so it's better to ask what am I not doing 😩. Making dinner, running errands, being my kids chauffeur, my husband's secretary, making appointments, canceling appointments, helping with homework (😳flashbacks to homeschooling for the first time earlier during the pandemic) and always, I mean always, tackling our laundry mountain. The list is truly never ending 😩
Who in the creative world do you look up to? Drop their IG handles so we can stalk them:
Her style is truly unique and intriguing I can watch her paint in watercolor all day.
Maggie Cole @maggiecoledraws
Willian Santiago @willian_santiago
Colour, colour, colour. Love his beautiful art. Such bold, colorful pieces. I love it, definitely my vibe.
Maggie Stephenson @_maggiestephenson_
Candace Westby @candace.wesbyart
Sis I could go on and on. Honesty the talent on this platform is unmatched.
What advice would you give to someone just starting out?
I'm right there with ya. I've had my art account for a long time ( 😬 2016). I started posting my art because I had just had my second child and it's been a while since I've done art. I was reminded of how much I loved painting but mom life really took over for years. When I started my account I was busy trying to figure out my style and being inconsistent and frankly comparing myself and feeling like a failure. I wasn't confident enough to make prints.
I came up with every excuse in the book to not make my business legitimate. I'd just do a couple commissions here and there. I convinced myself that I'd be overwhelmed, what if my art doesn't sell what if I can't afford inventory. Excuses,excuses and more excuses. My tip would be don't chase trends, be original sis, create what you love and hone your skills. Stay in your lane there's enough space for all of us and don't allow fear to consume you and hold you hostage from chasing your dreams.
You don't have to make leaps and bounds even if it's just baby steps forward as long as you're making moves. This is literally me just giving myself my own advice. I'm my own motivation 😅
ALRIGHTY now for some Quick Fire questions
Thanks sooooo much Samira for taking the time out to answer these questions for me. It's been awesome learning more about you!
Want to see more of Samira's work? Check her out below: