On Wednesday night at 7:00pm I arrived at the appointed room in the Duncan of Jordanstone building to be met by Carol Doocot, the tutor. Curiously she was wearing a white dressing gown, but I put this down to Artistic eccentricity. She bade me sit by the group of shabbily attired, rough looking young sorts (some of the females sported tattoos and some of males unashamedly wore earrings) who were to be my classmates. Several of the roughs attempted to engage me in conversation on a variety of topics, but I steadfastly ignored them.
"Well class, we have a new member joining the group today," announced Carol. "Horton Carew - he's the street artist I was telling you about. I'm sure you'll all do your best to make him feel welcome. Sorry to put you on the spot Horton, but perhaps you could tell the class a bit about yourself."
Happy that my reputation evidently preceded me, I grew confident and agreed to share a few tidbits of biographical information to keep the baying mob satiated, as well as offering a little advice to the scruffier elements of the group on how to present themselves more respectably.
"Thank you Horton. To fill you in, last time the class met, we'd just started some life drawing which we'll be continuing with today. Okay, if everyone could get their materials out, we'll make a start."
I took out my habitual Artistic tools - a biro and a pad of A4 lined paper from Woolworth's - but Carol informed me that if I wanted to do proper Art, I had to use more expensive paper and draw with sticks of charcoal to make my work a little more smudgy. Furthermore, it was essential to attach the paper to a wooden board with two metal clips and stand whilst drawing. Only through this method would my Art be considered acceptable.
These measures taken, I watched as Carol flitted around the room giving tips to my peers, such as to avoid using the pink pastel for skin tone, but to instead use blue and yellow. That way, it would look more Arty. The phrase 'skin tone' gave me a clue as to what our subject would be: something with skin. As it transpired, that was only the half of it. Readers, what I am about to impart is doubtless the raciest episode yet recorded in my electronic diary. If you are offended by filth and indecency, I strongly recommend that you do not read further lest you faint and crack the side of your head on a radiator as you collapse to the floor in your swoon.
Carol casually announced that she would be today's subject then promptly disrobed. With no sign of a blush, and no concession made whatsoever to cover her shame, she stood in the centre of the room completely naked. To compound this felony, none of my classmates appeared at all phazed by this unannounced nudity, and at once went to work sketching her.
"Remember to pay particular attention to the negative space; the space around the subject," suggested Carol, as though she were clothed instead of standing unadorned in a room full of people clutching charcoal sticks.
Appalled as I was, I made to leave at once. But readers, I must admit that I persuaded myself to reconsider, telling myself that all Artists must go through terrible ordeals and suffering in order to improve and inform their Art. No readers, to my everlasting mortification and regret, I elected to stay in that room among the nakedness. I had the opportunity to leave but did not, and I have paid for that decision since.
I did my best to draw the denuded Carol, starting with her head and working down. I kept my eyes focussed above her neck at all times so as not to corrupt myself more than was necessary. But readers, my anxiety continued to rise as my gaze was obliged to sink lower. Through deftly averting my eyes, I did manage to draw one of her naked arms, but when I came to draw her private chest area I am afraid I was corrupted. My heart beat faster, my breathing rose and fell rapidly and full drawn; a sobbing, that rose into a sense of strangulation, supervened, and turned into a dreadful convulsion, in which my senses left me, and I became unconscious.
I awoke to find a now-robed Carol hovering over me, asking if I was all right. She apologised, saying that the room can get very warm and that she should have opened a window. In terror, I grabbed my Artistic apparatus and fled that den of iniquity at once.
Readers, I confess that I have no experience whatsoever in matters such as these and am largely ignorant in the ways of love and the mechanics of human procreation. I am not entirely certain what happened to me on Wednesday night, but if I am correct in my suspicions, I fear that Carol may now be pregnant with my child. If that is the case I will either have to marry her soon in order to save face, or flee the country and disavow all knowledge of her.