ARTIST INTERVIEW: Sam Rader of Dasein Fragrance

four seasons at lark and june

Sam Rader is a self-taught perfumer and owner of Dasein Fragrance.  Her perfume style is mixed media avant garde and all her scents are unisex.  Sam blends her fragrances and runs Dasein out of her home in the hills of Glassell Park, Los Angeles.  When not perfuming, Sam is a psychologist in private practice in Silverlake.  Previously she was the founder and artistic director of The Silver Lake Chorus. We spoke to Sam about creativity and inspiration. 


What is your background and how have your past experiences fed into your art? 
I am a psychologist and musician, and I recently decided to try my hand at perfumery.  I am a completely self-taught perfumer and it has been an interesting journey learning as I go.  I engage psychology from an analytical part of my brain.  The music and perfume are more sensual and intuitive.  I don’t know any notes, chords or musical theory when I write songs.  I do everything by sound and feeling.  The same is true as a perfumer–I haven’t learned any of the rules of classical perfumery, so blending is a free-form experience for me.  I am also synesthetic–I see colors when I hear music or experience touch, and smells have different pitches to me like a musical scale.


Do you feel that your environment feeds into work and if so, what makes your work distinctively Californian? 
My work is definitely Californian.  My scents are inspired by the four seasons, and I thought of the California landscape as I crafted them.  In particular, SUMMER unisex fragrance is an homage to summer pool parties in Los Angeles–fresh cut grass, ruby red grapefruit, the jasmine and orange blossoms that bloom so hard here in the summer months, and cilantro because of the wonderful Mexican influence in the LA sensory aesthetic.


What are your top 3 studio essentials? 
A precise scale, clean glass droppers, and my cats Pen and Paper who keep me company.

Sam Rader Dasein

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