Sam Toft was born in June 1964 and her earliest ambition was to work in a post office.
Instead she has been a fire extinguisher salesman, a silver service waitress, a death grants advisor, a Wedgwood Rooms worker, a catering manager, a civil servant, a student, an au pair and an unemployed person.
Sam Toft graduated from Kingston Polytechnic with a BA in Applied Social Science (having transferred from a business sandwich degree with French).
She had not a clue what to do but knew through and through that she would never be a poet.
A career in the civil service was not well tolerated and catering management wasn’t really where her heart was.
A change in direction was needed.
Sam Toft moved up to Liverpool and did a BTEC in General Art and Design at the City of Liverpool Community College where an inspirational teacher by the name of Hering gave her the confidence to give it a go with her pictures.
Sam says: “I am lucky that my experiences as a child left me at the edge of things – ever watchful, observant and compelled to link scenes and memories into some kind of narrative.
Stripes, textures, delicious whiffs, children’s rhymes, eccentric characters, lovely hats, nostalgic tunes and beautiful dogs are all things that catch my attention and fuel my imagination.
I am grateful to these favourite things that make my creativity possible, along with my eyes, my hands, and especially my mum.”
Sam Toft has been working as an artist these past 12 years using mixed media: oil pastels, coloured inks, scraffito and the innovative fingers-and-thumbs technique.
She is delighted to have work published as cards and limited edition prints.
"Sam Toft met Mr Mustard a while back dawdling along the seafront and he is so glad to have her drawing him in pictures, colouring them in so well and hardly ever going over the lines. Ernest Hemmingway Mustard lives on the Brighton-Hove border in a not-so-damp basement flat with his dear lady wife Violet and Doris, their grumpy, rather portly Jack Russell. Ernest is a kind, simple soul with a distinctive rolling walk and a gentle, enthusiastic manner.
He hums as he walks and Doris Dog, his constant if reluctant companion, affects not to hear.
She likes him well enough, don’t get me wrong, but finds him slightly annoying like a bright but over-indulged spaniel.
He likes his bike, the sunsets, plenty of custard creams and the Damart Sale, while Doris has three main hobbies: breakfast, dinner and tea." Sam Toft