'Twas my freshman year of college, six years before I first started writing fiction, and three years before I was rejected from a short story writing course because I was an art major.1 The professor spread out about 100 postcards on the floor and had each of us choose three to combine into a drawing.
One caught my eye right away: a work by my favorite artist, René Magritte.2 I snatched it up and scanned the rest of the cards as my choices quickly dwindled. In the end I snagged a Picasso collage I'd never seen before and a photo of a desert landscape to round out my triumvirate of awesome.
I knew I couldn't resort to my usual grayscale pencil drawing, not with a desert sunset involved, so for the first time ever I ventured into the realm of chalk pastels. I merged Magritte's tuba, suitcase, and cloth-ed woman with a Picasso moth and set them against the desert backdrop. The result:
I'd hoped to come up with some clever way to tie this all back to story writing, but since a picture is worth 1,000 words and this one comprises three pictures, I'm already way past my quota. Instead, I'll just leave you with this:
More art should have tubas in it.
1 That's a half-truth. I wasn't rejected for being an art major. I was rejected for not being an English major. It's probably just as well, since my other courses only afforded me 17 seconds of spare time that semester. (Seventeen seconds? / I can't write a tale that fast. / Maybe a haiku...)
2 Ceci n'est pas une apostille.