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ESSAY As a child raised on two continents, my life has been defined by the “What if…? What if I had actually been born in the United States? What if we had stayed in the USA and had not come back to Bulgaria?These are the questions whose answers I will never know (unless, of course, they invent a time machine by 2050). When my mother said “We are moving back to Bulgaria,” I naively asked, “Is that a town or a state?
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.
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.
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.My parents moved to the United States when I was two years old. Would I value my achievements more if I had continued riding that yellow school bus every morning?But something—at first unforeseen and vastly unappreciated—gradually worked its way into my heart and mind loosening the tight grip of the “what if”—Bulgaria.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.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.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.Country: Bulgaria High School: Public school, 30 students in graduating class Ethnicity: White Gender: Female GPA: 6.0 out of 6.0 SAT: Reading 730, Math 760, Writing 800 ACT: n/a SAT Subject Tests Taken: Literature, World History Extracurriculars: Tennis player, coordinator and volunteer in the Youth Parliament (non-governmental organization), class president and member of the student council, editor in chief of the high school newspaper.Awards: Essay Competition finalist in Sustainability Debate, third place in Literary Essay Competition, first place in Bulgaria si ti!