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Though, on the surface, Bobby’s essay explores the contrast between the abstractness of his art and the order of rest of his life, it also mirrors the history of art itself.Just as Bobby the old artist had “the proportions just right, the contrast perfected” in his sketchbook, so too did the painters of the Renaissance work tirelessly to master perspective—to make art seem as realistic as possible.With the top applicants from every high school applying to the best schools in the country, it's important to have an edge in your college application. Because to me, there was only one "it," and "it" was a little less than two thousand miles west, an unassuming little office building located amidst a cluster of similarly unassuming little office buildings, distinguishable from one another on the outside only by the rusted numbers nailed to each door.
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.
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.
I started to look into their other releases, eventually immersing myself into the complete punk discography. Luckily, as I transitioned from a private school to a brand new public high school, I got to clean the slate.
My mother, having grown up in a racially segregated New York, was more likely to listen to Stevie Wonder than Stevie Nicks. So while my compatriots indulged in the music of Taylor Swift, One Direction, and Lady Gaga, my tacky Hot Topic headphones blasted Green Day, Ramones, and The Clash. In my girls’ prep school, the goal was to be blond and good at soccer. I bought yoga pants and found they were comfortable.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.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.I suppose this is strange, as the rest of my life can best be characterized by everything the studio is not: cleanliness and order and structure.But then again, the studio was like nothing else in my life, beyond anything in which I've ever felt comfortable or at ease. My carefully composed sketchbooks—the proportions just right, the contrast perfected, the whiteness of the background meticulously preserved—were often marred by the frenzied strokes of my instructor's charcoal as he tried to teach me not to draw accurately, but passionately. 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.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?Late evening rays streamed through these sprawling glass panes, casting a gentle glow upon all that they graced—paper and canvases and paintbrushes alike. The instructor sometimes talked, and we sometimes listened.As day became night, the soft luminescence of the art studio gave way to a fluorescent glare, defining the clean rectilinear lines of Dillon Art Center against the encroaching darkness. Most of the time, though, it was just us—children, drawing and talking and laughing and sweating in the cluttered and overheated mess of an art studio.