If you’ve recently seen someone with a sketchbook out in Tacoma you may very well have come across Taylor Sampey. The 30-year-old Hilltop resident, who is a project manager/engineer by day, is capturing our evolving City of Destiny one block at a time.
Take a look:
“Deciding what subject matter to sketch is actually quite difficult for me because there is so much to choose from,” Taylor told us during a recent chat.
“Our city is filled with such interesting locations and backstories. I tend to gravitate toward places that are soaked in history, particularly areas that have recently undergone (or are slotted for) change. Something about capturing a scene before it’s gone is incredibly appealing to me.”
Impressively, most of his drawings are done in an hour while he’s out for drinks or food. However, when inspiration truly strikes, he’s been known to spend an entire day in one location. We’re talking a solid 6-10 hours on-site with watercolors to capture every detail.
You aren’t likely to see any of Taylor’s art on display in town, however. The vast majority of it currently sits piled in the corner of his bedroom.
“Most of the work is done in sketchbooks so there’s really no way to frame, sell or display anything without sacrificing the drawings on the opposite side of the page,” he explained. “The sketchbooks will either be passed down to family or donated to the city for historical archiving; probably both. “
Down the line, though? He says: “I do think it would be amazing if my art was publicly displayed in the very places that inspire(d) me. I’ve been working on some more detailed and refined acrylic paintings that I intend to donate for that specific purpose. Wink, wink, Camp Bar, Broken Spoke and McMenamins!”
Six years ago Taylor moved to Tacoma from Houston on a whim, and against advice from friends and family. He has zero regrets.
“There’s also a lot to be said about our community,” he shared. “Collectively, Tacoman’s just ‘keep it real.’ We’re a diverse group of passionate and outspoken people, yet (dispite the outdated stereotypes) we live rather harmoniously. Having lived in five states and countless towns/cities, I can say that Tacoma is definitely my kind of place.”
FYI, Taylor just started an Instagram for his sketches. Though he’s not a real fan of social media, an “evergrowing number of people have politely demanded” that he get over it.
Go and give him a follow now @taylor_sampey to keep up with what he sketches next.