The Egrets and Mallows of Blackwater ~ Safe Haven!

In a prior blog, I wrote about this painting in progress and how I would post the final image once I refined the painting and put on the finishing touches.  Here is the image of the finished painting!

The Egrets and Mallows of Blackwater by William R. Beebe, 30 x 40, oil on canvas, $6500

The Egrets and Mallows of Blackwater by William R. Beebe, 30 x 40, oil on canvas, $6500

I liked most of what I had painted in the last work-in-progress image.  Much of what I had left to do was with the water.  I spent many hours blending and layering paint to eliminate the canvas weave in the water. I left some canvas weave apparent in certain areas for effect.  

Finishing touches included defining each Great White Egret’s face, painting in their legs and the reflections of their legs, smoothing out the white reflections, and adding washes across the reflections to indicate a ripple or two, and I refined the mallow blossoms.  

The Egrets and Mallows of Blackwater, detail shot, by William R. Beebe

The Egrets and Mallows of Blackwater, detail shot, by William R. Beebe

The Egrets and Mallows of Blackwater, detail shot, by William R. Beebe

The Egrets and Mallows of Blackwater, detail shot, by William R. Beebe

I gave a lot of consideration to the darkness of the water in order to make the White Egrets stand out.  In real life the Egrets were very prominent, as if they were dancers on stage with a spotlight on them.

Even though the Egrets were in their safe haven, they appeared to be on high alert.  There were many more Egrets in either direction, all along the wide canal.  The sky was graced with Egrets in flight.  Frequent takeoffs and landings rearranged the groupings every few seconds.  

I decided to paint it on a 30 by 40 inch canvas to give it some scale.  I wanted this piece to be sizeable in order to help bring the large birds to life.  

Thank you as always for reading my journal and for your interest in my art!  I hope you like my painting and can get a sense of the magic we felt that day at the Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge.  Thanks again!


One of the joys of being an artist is having the freedom to follow my passion...
— William R. Beebe
What's next? Drawing by William R. Beebe

What's next?

Drawing by William R. Beebe