As I was fiddling with my camera I approached the boat ramp. I happened to stop just at the right time, looked up and there was a Great Blue Heron standing in the water on the ramp. He was right in front of me, frozen still, in the hopes that I might not see him.
Many, many times when approaching a Blue Heron they will fly away in an instant upon being disturbed by the slightest noise. This time he froze for a few minutes. He was so camouflaged and blended in with the grayish tones of the water that he figured I wouldn’t see him.
What he didn’t realize is that his bright white face was catching what little light there was that day, thus rendering his natural camouflage useless. I thought his statuesque pose had a touch of Mr. Cool to it.
I also liked the overall balanced composition with the rocks and water pattern creating horizontals, and the bird, piling and reflections creating offsetting verticals. The curve of the rope in the upper right adds to the nautical feel of the scene, and indicates to the viewer that the scene is most likely at a marina or boatyard.
This heron was just what I was looking for; a classic pose, in the water, with an overall tonal background. I wanted the painting to be mostly about the bird, but also to have his surroundings interesting without being distracting.