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The landscapes of Walter Launt Palmer, particularly his snow scenes, were popular prizewinners throughout a long professional career that began before the artist was 20.
Born in 1854, in Albany, New York, the son of sculptor Erastus Dow Palmer, Walter Palmer grew up with art and artists. His first lessons, in his teens, were with portraitist Charles Elliott and Hudson River School landscapist Frederic Church.
Palmer's work was first accepted for the National Academy of Design show in 1872, when he was only 18. After a European tour in 1873, Palmer continued art studies in Paris until 1876. One of his masters was Emile Auguste Carolus Duran, whose influence is seen in the controlled tonality that modified the academic tightness of Palmer's early work. Subtlety of color, texture and light became characteristic of all of Palmer's work.