Henry H. Parker was a Midlands landscape painter working in the last quarter of the 19th Century. It is believed that he was born in London and was based there for most of his life. Like many of his contemporaries, he concentrated on painting “pure” landscapes – a genre that he mastered early in his career. His landscapes are lush and tranquil, frequently featuring a figure in a boat or walking down a country path. The scenes are often sunny and bright and the waters are calm and soothing.
His style shows an influence by the Impressionists in his use of bright colours and quick brushstrokes, but a definite understanding of Academic principles is also displayed. This style of painting was typical for late Victorian landscape artists who sought to incorporate Impressionist techniques in their more traditional paintings.
His landscapes and skies were created with a free, yet controlled application of pigment, while the watery areas of his work were handled in the more traditional way – using glazes to create depth and reflection. His paintings were well composed, balanced. He painted mostly views of the Thames, in Surrey, Kent and Wales.
Parker’s work shows similarity to the paintings of Benjamin Williams Leader (1831-1923); if he was not a student of Leader’s it is probable that he studied his works. It is worth noting that Parker was one of only a handful of artists of his caliber to never exhibit at the major exhibition halls in England during his lifetime.