I've got about eight separate and yet loosely-related mini-topics that I'm going to present in a couple of posts. I suppose they're analogous to Disney "package" films, more like, say, The Three Caballeros than Pinocchio. The collections are not random: all of these topics have to do with things seen in the front yard of the Disneyland Mansion. Today there are three mini-posts, and the common theme among them is color.
Oooooooo Color -r-r-r-r
The Imagineers who built Disneyland came out of the animation studios, and that means they were sensitive colorists, among other things. People who admire the end product have noted again and again how subtle and suitable is the use of color throughout the park. It's all quite deliberate and meticulously maintained (for the most part). (Hit that button again, would you? Thanks.) The last time I was at Disneyland I noticed for the first time that the stone "blocks" of Sleeping Beauty castle come in six different colors. When you look at older photos, you find that they've been multicolored like that for a long time, maybe from the beginning. Some of the variations are so subtle that it's hard to pick up on them with the camera. Why so many? especially since some are so similar? Because it looks right. (Hit it one more time? Thanks, you're awesome.)
What Hench does not mention is that a radically different color scheme for the Mansion exterior was being contemplated practically from the moment it was first built. You never hear about it, and were it not for the fact that a mysterious and unique document from those days survived and surfaced, it truly would be long forgotten.
That the house would be white (or off-white) seems clear enough from Sam McKim's iconic concept painting in 1958, which you will recall was a paint-over of a Ken Anderson sketch which was based in turn on the Shipley-Lydecker house in Baltimore.
years, so public expectations about the house, long before it was even built, were that it would be a white building.
months after the last major landscaping around the brand-new building had been completed.
grand scheme of things does this oft-published artifact belong? It's a 1962 or 63 color guide for the Haunted Mansion.
and puzzle over it today; we've got two more mini-topics to cover. Mustn't dawdle. Scroll on, scroll on.
Garden Variety Imagineering
Applied color theory doesn't end with the building itself. Let's turn around and look at the front yard. What a pleasant place it is! Other, newer rides may have more exciting and entertaining queues (Star Tours, Indiana Jones, Tower of Terror), but for my money the Anaheim Mansion still takes the prize for most beautiful queue.
P.S. Lonesome Ghost points out that I've overlooked an obvious example of the green-purple palate at the Mansions: The Butler's uniform.
them when they were like that, and there are enough photos around to give you an idea of how impressive they were.