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Palettes of the Masters - Learning More About Maxfield Parrish

Today I had the opportunity to participate in the VAWAA Online Series: Palettes of the Masters with artist Clarissa Shanahan where we did a study of the artist Maxfield Parrish - specifically about his use of color in his work. Not only have I been a longtime fan of the art of Maxfield Parrish (I actually did my high school senior report on American illustrators in which I included his work as examples) but I also had the opportunity to take a class from Clarissa a few years back at PAFA to study encaustics.

This discussion was an interesting look at how Parrish used primarily highly prismatic, complimentary colors, (orange and blue or yellow and violet) to invoke different emotions and sense of space in his pieces. Also, we looked at how that same concept is used today in a variety of ways including film, fashion and interior design. While I've had color and design classes before this session, it was a good reminder to really take note of the color choices of artists I admire to get a better understanding of the kind of feeling they intend to reflect in their work. And of course, it is something to keep in mind for my own work, even when working from real-life or photographs. The tone of a color can change the mood of a piece instantly, which then affects the way the viewer interacts with it.

If you would like to check out the other two sessions left in this particular series, or sign up for a different discussion, you can do so at Vacationing With An Artist's website:

Please also check out Clarissa Shanahan's website as well:

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