Sam Yong is a 28 year old artist and explorer who has spent the last four months adventuring around the United States. He quit his job back home to foster a new path to expand his consciousness as an artist. We asked Sam some tough questions and some silly questions … we try to keep it professional, but honestly it ended up being an afternoon of good conversation about art, travel, life, death, adventures, and everything in between we while grubbed on delicious Takoba.
Sam disclosed what it’s been like spending months on the road while crashing on couches, sharing his artwork, meeting artists from across the country, and how it all helped him to learn about himself as a person and an artist.
A bit of background info… Sam is a Virgo and was born in the Year of the Tiger. Currently unaware of his spirit animal, but “working on discovering it”. For even more inside info read on artist lovers, read on….
Zuzu : Where were you born? Where do you live now?
Sam : I was born in Malasia but moved to New Zealand when I was about 3 years old. I currently live in Melbourne, Australia.
Zuzu : Tell us a little about your trip to the US
Sam : I started 4 months ago in Vancouver, then Vancouver Island, Bamf, Seattle, Portland, San Fransisco, Los Angeles, Yosemite, Vegas Zion National Park, Bryce Canyon, Antelope Canyon, Grand Canyon, Colorado, Chicago, Winnipeg, Toronto, Detroit, New York, New Orleans, and now in Austin, TX. I’m off to Los Angeles next and then back home.
Zuzu : Why did you decide to do this trip? What’s your eventual goal?
Sam : I’m doing it for the creative inspiration and to make meaningful connections with fellow artists. My ultimate goal is to get my art in galleries and shows around the country.
Zuzu : Your pencil drawings are breathtaking. When did you first start drawing? Talk to us about your imagery, you definitely have a specific style going. Why animals and creatures?
Sam : I’ve been drawing all my life but I got serious about 3 years ago. I want to convey human emotion without using humans. In the natural world when stuff dies, it doesn’t matter.. it’s just dead. If you try to make it look like there’s some emotion happening behind it, it becomes interesting to me. When humans die we get all sad. I guess I’m trying to get to grips with mortality. I read somewhere that everything we do can be related to sex and death — every decision we make, everything.
Zuzu : How long do one of these drawings take you to finish?
Sam : Anywhere between 8-30 hours
Zuzu : Describe yourself in three words.
Sam : Adult baby enigma
Zuzu : Describe your art in three words.
Sam : Everything is dead
Zuzu : What has this trip taught you?
Sam : I’m more fearless than I thought. One morning I woke up in a meth den in Toronto by accident. It’s been a wild ride. I’ve learned to let go.
Zuzu : Any advice to others from your travels?
Sam : You can spend all your time in a studio and it won’t matter. Seeing shit is more important. Travel.
Zuzu : Currently speaking, who are your favorite artists?
Sam : Contemporary Jeremy Geddes, Guy Maestri, John Singer Sargent, and Albrecht Schenck
Zuzu : What do you want to tell people?
Sam : Quit your job and travel.
Zuzu : Final thoughts?
Sam : This is just the beginning. I feel like ….
Hey America, Im Sam. I came here to fuck up your shit.