If you meet Katie Tam in person, you will find that she is one of the sweetest, most humble people you will ever meet. If you meet her online (specifically through Instagram), you will find a confident, creative sophomore. Tam is a talented person who does not wait for opportunities to come to her, but rather seeks them out herself.
Tam started an Instagram page for her art when she was 12 years old, and now as a 14-year-old sophomore at CVHS, she still posts on the account regularly. Tam’s page, @katie.tam.art, is chock full of lively watercolors, sketches, and even a sprinkling of digital art.
“I’m not afraid to try new materials,” said Tam. At the moment her favorite medium is watercolor.
Tam’s art is eccentric. An inked human vase, a sketch of a giraffe-necked female, watercolor patterns encompassed in a circle, and a painting of a woman with patterns imprinted on her skin are only some of her offbeat, I-only-listen-to-myself type pieces. Even Tam’s black and white pieces are so alive that they seem to teem with color.
“She’s not a person that’s set to rules, she’s just doing her own thing,” said Tam’s cousin, Edmond Zheng. “She basically takes different styles and makes them her own.” Tam is inspired by watching other people create their art on YouTube or other social medias. Her current favorite is an anonymous YouTuber, PearFleur.
Much of Tam’s work is of plants and people. One of her favorite works of art that she has done is simply a single eye. Somehow the artwork leaves the viewer emotional.
Besides her obvious talent, Tam is bold. There are not many teenagers that have the courage to put themselves in the public eye, as she has by starting her art account. Tam started the art account to gain publicity for her art. But her account also serves a different purpose as well: motivation.
“There’s something about being acknowledged for doing something you love that makes you want to keep doing what you’re doing,” said Tam. She is grateful to anyone who compliments her on her work.
Tam hopes to make a career out of her art in the future.
“I have this dream job, I kind of want to be an illustrator at Google,” said Tam. She was inspired by Grace Moon, a former Draw for Google Art Contest winner, a Canyon Middle School and CVHS graduate and award-winning Olympian artist. Hearing about a local success story showed Tam that it is possible to succeed in the art industry.
Tam’s humbly unabashed ability to leap into new water, and motivation to succeed in the competitive industry of art, is an inspiration for everyone with a passion.
Instagram username: Katie.tam.art