Colloquially known as Sticker Lady, things weren't always the smoothest for Samantha Lo, one of Singapore's most well-known street artists. Lo garnered widespread media attention when she had a run-in with the law in 2012, for pasting satirical stickers on traffic light buttons and spraying the words "My Grandfather Road" on several roads in Singapore.
Her arrest prompted netizens to petition to lighten her sentence and subsequently earned her the name of "Sticker Lady". Fast forward to today, Lo is not only endeavouring in her own projects, but also working with various brands on a myriad of art installations and projects.
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In 2015, Lo held her first solo exhibition called the "LIMPEH Show". Her work consisted of portraits featuring late Singapore founding father Lee Kuan Yew. She also founded a collaborative platform called INDIGOISM and the now-defunt Singaporean platform RCGNTN. She is also a member of urban art collective RSCLS.
Some of the clients she has worked with include Singapore Tourism Board, Sentosa, Singapore River One, The Singapore Zoo, NUH, OCBC, Facebook, 4Fingers, Redbull, Desperados, Adidas, Converse, Fred Perry and Rimowa, to name a few. This ranged from murals and design work to digital campaigns and content creation.
In this edition of Now following, Marketing sits down with Lo, who goes by the moniker SKLO, to talk about her journey so far with brands.
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Marketing: How did you become popular?
Back in 2012, I was arrested for pasting stickers on traffic light buttons and spray painting on roads in the central business district area. This led to the "Sticker Lady" name and saga that came along with it. Before my identity was released upon arrest the stickers went viral online and offline, which was an amazing thing when you create for the streets.
Marketing: Did this episode impact the awareness of your personal brand?
This episode probably only reinforced awareness of my personal brand.
There are some challenges that come along with the territory though due to the “controversial” nature of my past, but it’s good, as I gained clients who align with my brand and stand by with me up till this day. I really do love all my clients.
Marketing: Any brand assignments which were memorable for you?
Recently I had the privilege to fly down to Melbourne to create a mural on the façade of a building in Bourke Street for 4Fingers, which is the first mural that was approved by the Melbourne City Council for the street. Did it in two days in the Melbourne winter, and it was the largest wall I’ve ever taken on alone at eight metres by 10 metres.
Marketing: How has your experience with marketers changed over the years?
I’ve been noticing a great shift with an interest in targeting Millennials through content creation, and working with influencers that speak to this demographic.
Marketing: What are some of the outrageous demands you have gotten from clients?
Delivery of work in a short time frame, on a low budget, with multiple changes in between. Sometimes I wonder if artists are skinny because of this.
Marketing: What are some things you feel clients should take note of when it comes to working with creators?
I feel that clients have been taking note of what the creators are good at and trust them to impart their style onto their message. This is from the photos or videos created, to the copy on the post.
Marketing: What are some of the challenges of being a creator in Singapore?
Sometimes the credibility of your work gets questioned, which stresses the importance of working with brands you are aligned to.
Marketing: How important is a social media following today in the eyes of client marketers?
It’s probably high up there, the more followers you have the more they believe what you’re doing is popular and unique that would attract the followers you have. However, on the other hand followers can also be bought. To be honest nothing beats the client genuinely loving the work you do and choosing you based on that, and if the content is really good it will go far.
Marketing: What do you do to strike a connection with your followers?
I’d drop a post on some new work I’ve come up with that they can check out, from paintings to art installations. Sometimes I drop special releases such as new artwork and designs they can purchase, usually for a limited time only.
Marketing: What is next for you?
I’m currently working on a special project with Funan that’s set to look really exciting due to launch real soon. My side project INDIGOISM will also be hosting our next Barter Market at Singapore Coffee Festival where we will be having 30 artists trading their work on a non-monetary basis.
And finally I have a solo show in Melbourne set to happen during Melbourne Festival that I am really, really stoked for! Loads of painting to do, really excited for this!