“Flights of fantasy" for Max, by John Borys


“Flights of fantasy" for Max, by John Borys

Photo Glazing

The amazing phthaloyl green blues immediately strike anyone who has seen a Maxfield Parrish illustration. He does this with very thin glazes of oil paints. Glazing is a painting technique that applies thin layers of various colors. The light bounces through all the different layers to form another color. The saturation and depth of color using a glazing technique is like no other.

In the digital age of photography that we are currently in — the “glazing technique” (thin layers of color) come from “applying different film simulations” to an image. Films such as Kodak Ektachrome 100VS, SX-70 film, Fuji Velvia 50 and others (used in the days of film) are the glazing layer. The nuances of where the different layers of films are positioned and applied (with varying densities, and selective placement) are like creating an oil painting digitally.

With Exposure X4, an excellent software editing tool for photographers, you can get creative and “literally paint film layers” over an image. Digital photography combined with a traditional painterly technique. Exposure X4 from Alien Skin is the “brush.”

Maxfield Parrish (1870-1966) was an American painter and illustrator who effectively shaped the Golden Age of Illustration and the future of American visual art in general. His subjects were androgynous nudes in fantasy settings. His pallet of color was markedly distinctive and instantly recognizable to anyone who has seen his work. Norman Rockwell greatly admired his work and has stated that while in art school Parrish was “one of my gods.” For more on Maxfield Parrish:

For more on John Borys and his work and The John Borys School of Photography can be found here.

Cascades, Maxfield Parrish 1959