(forgive me if this is in the wrong section, I'm not exactly searching or applying for art college right now, just working towards getting there skillwise?)
This summer, if all goes well, I plan to take traditional drawing with an instructor. When I first came to his studio to see a preview of class, I showed him some of my work. He seemed to like it somewhat, however he gave intimations that I may be too late to get into a good art college along the lines of SVA or RISD. There was a man who was painting behind him and he did say that I was pretty late already as well.
This guy is certainly prestigious, since last year three of his students got into RISD with scholarship, as well as a few in Ringling, so I don't doubt his teaching skill. It's just that there are a lot of his students that have been drilling traditional art like figure drawing, still life, oil painting and the like since they were pretty young (think elementary to middle school), and I'm pretty sure those were the people that eventually were accepted into the really good art schools.
So is it too late for me? Currently I'm a sophomore in high school. How long will it take to learn enough figure drawing and realism to render competently enough? I did take some technical drawing in Shanghai last summer for a month or so, which did help a lot, however I haven't been able to retain the skills once I came back to the states.
A sample of my work (my dA) I also have a tumblr link in my sig.