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Maxfield Parrish Hardcover – July 1, 2007

4.6 out of 5 stars 25 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Coy Ludwig is an Assistant Professor of Art at the State University of New York in Oswego.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Schiffer Publishing; First THUS Edition edition (July 1, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0887405274
  • ISBN-13: 978-0887405273
  • Product Dimensions: 9.4 x 0.9 x 12.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #412,748 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By G. Wagner on September 17, 1999
Format: Hardcover
Recently, I had the pleasure of viewing the Parrish exhibit mounted by the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Art. My experience was that much more enjoyable as a result of owning and reading Ludwig's book. The book, aside from the dutiful enumeration of Parrish's accomplishments, provides a treasure trove of Parrish's work; so much so that only three or four of the works were "new" to me. The explaination of Parrish's techniques is an absolute necessity to Parrish afficianados. It makes you crave a viewing of the actual works.
While some of the color prints fail to do the artist justice and there are far too many black and white reproductions, the book is a wonderful catalog of Parrish's work. Oddly, I was surprised to learn of Parrish's obsession with model/muse, Susan Lewin; a woman completly eliminated in Ludwig's treatment of Parrish. To gain an more complete appreciation of Parrish, one should understand that relationship. Perhaps, in addition to purchasing this book, one should obtain the PAFA'a catalog of their Parrish exhibition
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Format: Hardcover
Mr. Ludwig's book was the first tome on Parrish I ever had in my hands. That was in 1973, and I still consider it the most comprehensive book on the man and his art available. While there are many more Parrish publications on the shelves today than 25 years ago (several with more and better reproductions), none has the interesting mix of biography, reproductions, catalog and technical information on Parrish and his work that Mr. Ludwig included in this book (the bibliography sent me in search of as many of the original magazine articles as I could find,... well worth the hunt). This is one Parrish book that feels as if it were done for love of the artist and not for love of money.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
the book is great, but it isn't as i thought it will be. It is a bit old and the images found in black and withe are in color in the internet. if you are looking a book with al of his work and images this isn't it. IF you're looking for an explanation of his process, technique and context this is it
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Format: Hardcover
This is an excellent book on an artist with a unique style and career. Coy Ludwig does a great job covering the topics of Parrish's privileged childhood, his career as both a highly successful commercial artists and as a fine artists, his approach to the business of art, and finally a very good last chapter on the techniques used by Parrish.

Parrish, born in 1870 into a privileged Quaker family, had a wealthy father who pursued the arts. Maxfield's father took the family on long 4 month vacations to Europe so that the father could paint. He was taken to all the major museums and his interest in the art of other eras is evident in his work, especially the Pre-Raphaelites. Romance, folk tales and middle aged costumes populate his commercial art. Parrish was one of the first artists to understand the commercial value of making mechanical reproductions of his art which were sold separately from the original work. Many artists follow this commercial model today. He would spend considerable time painting a perfectly beautiful finished painting, which was then reproduced with mechanical lithographic techniques and these reproductions, called prints, were then sold to the public. Parrish may a fortune and kept the original art. One real strength to the book is the final chapter where the technique of using glazes over a blue under painting is explained. Parrish would use photography and the magic lantern method of developing the perfectly drawn image, These images were included in a composition using the method of the Golden Mean, a compositional strategy that goes back to the ancient Greeks. Parrish would develop a monochromatic image in blue on white that would constitute the complete composition.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Coy Ludwig has put together an interesting and useful book. The section on how Parrish created his paintings by layers of paint and varnish to create a glow was particularly fascinating. It sits on my coffee table and guests find the book very interesting to read and look at as well. Profusely illustrated.

Interestingly, the cover shows a very blue version of Daybreak, Parrish's most famous painting. It matches the known prints of Daybreak from the early 20th Century. Yet, the original is much more golden and violet. I have a limited edition print done from an accurate photograph of the original. It's beautiful and really makes the blue version stand out as almost another painting.

While the book doesn't explain this difference, it remains one of the definitive books about Maxfield Parrish and a "must own" for any fan or collector of Maxfield Parrish.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book has always been the "essential" Maxfield Parrish reference for me. It contains page after page of information about the artist's incredible personal and professional life. It also goes into great depth detailing the illustrator's perfected (and tedious) technique of creating illustrations. From crafting meticulous miniatures for layout to the final process of layering oil glazes onto the canvas. It's all there.

I would highly recommend this book to Illustrators, art teachers, and overall art enthusiasts who want to expand their knowledge about illustration and a true master of the past. This book has been cited in other publications such as "Step by Step Graphics" for the depth analysis of his technique.

My only small criticism is that I would've liked to seen more color prints within the book. A few too many black and white reproductions of the artwork. That aside, I feel this book is of tremendous value.
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