I know precious little about Mead Schaeffer(1898-1980). That’s alright with me, as I know precious little about art in general. Like his contemporary Wyeth, Schaeffer’s career in fine arts seems centered around producing lovingly rendered illustrations for editions of the classics.
The colors are rich and vibrant, the lines are crisp and sure.
Schaeffer’s work is worth having on hand when creating a mood for a game.
Consider the sample below, from The Count of Monte Cristo. We see the wealth of the man, in his dress and his setting. His face is both brooding predator and guarded prey. If given this illustration along with a name for a powerful NPC, what inferences might players draw?
Or the piece above. Starting a session in media res is not the newest trick in the world, but there is something arresting about leading with disaster. What were the two meeting about, how did it come to this, and how does your character get out?
I again make no claim to owning any of these pieces, but hope you find some inspiration from them.