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It was the difference between drawing a man's face and using abstraction to explore his soul.But thus was the fundamental gap in my artistic understanding—the difference between the surface realities that I wanted to depict, and the profound though elusive truths of the human condition that art could explore.
And I can't tell you exactly when or why my attitude changed, but eventually my own lines began to unabashedly disregard the rules of depth or tonality to which I had once dutifully adhered, my fervor leaving in its wake black fingerprints and smudges where once had existed unsoiled whiteness.
It was in this studio that I eventually made the leap into a new realm of art—a realm in which I was neither experienced nor comfortable.
No, it was not so clean and not so white and not so nice.
But I have drawn—rather, lived—in this studio for most of my past ten years.
State: California, USA High School: Private boarding school, 100 students in graduating class Ethnicity: Asian Gender: Male GPA: 4.0 out of 4.0 SAT: Reading 750, Math 750, Writing 800 ACT: n/a SAT Subject Tests Taken: Mathematics Level 2, Biology E/M, Literature Extracurriculars: Nonprofit director, Editor-in-Chief of student newspaper, Senior Editor of literary magazine, Art Prefect, varsity baseball player Awards: Williams Book Prize, National Merit Scholar, AP Scholar with Distinction, Scholastic Art and Writing Regional Gold Key Major: Government : A Houston-based academic preparation business with glowing feedback and global operations, The Brain Domain features college counseling, test preparation, and one-on-one tutoring tailored to students’ unique learning styles. Those few openings in between the tapestry of art were dotted with grubby little handprints, repurposed by some overzealous young artist as another surface for creative expression.
ESSAY Bold white rafters ran overhead, bearing upon their great iron shoulders the weight of the skylight above. In the middle of the room lay two long tables, each covered with newspaper, upon which were scattered dried-up markers and lost erasers and bins of unwanted colored pencils. The older artists—myself included—sat around these tables with easels, in whatever space the limited confines of the studio allowed.Indeed, not only does this essay document Bobby’s development from child to young adult, but Bobby’s art also matures from something orderly and superficial to something abstract and deeply meaningful.What separates Bobby’s essay from a well-written story, however, is the subtextual narrative it provides the reader.Though I did point out that its origins trace back to jazz musicians of the Harlem Renaissance. I insisted I didn’t care what people thought of me, which was true.Also that one of the greatest guitarists of all time—dear Mr. My devotion to punk rock began in seventh grade, when Green Day’s “Boulevard of Broken Dreams” came up on my i Tunes shuffle. Yet if I base my actions almost solely on their behavior, how could I deny their influence?It is first utilized to bring the reader into the piece and make the introduction pop, with “Late evening rays [...] casting a gentle glow” and “the soft luminescence of the art studio” becoming “a fluorescent glare.” Immediately, the reader knows what the essay will generally be about: art.Still, in the beginning of the essay, a lot of information is left out, leaving the reader begging for details to contextualize the mental images Bobby leaves them.Throughout the rest of the piece, Bobby’s use of imagery brings his essay to life, with “black fingerprints and smudges” and “unsoiled whiteness” being used to describe his art.He also uses imagery to illustrate the contrast between his organized, type A persona and the abstract art he eventually creates.Just as Bobby the new artist’s “lines began to unabashedly disregard the rules of depth or tonality,” so too did art slowly—from the playful light of Monet’s Impressionism, to the square faces of Picasso’s Cubism and the complete abstraction of Pollock’s expressionism—care less and less about how realistic it was and more about the message it conveyed.In Bobby’s words, “It was the difference between drawing a man's face and using abstraction to explore his soul.” Disclaimer: With exception of the removal of identifying details, essays are reproduced as originally submitted in applications; any errors in submissions are maintained to preserve the integrity of the piece.