William Maw Egley was an English artist. He was born in 1826 in London. Many of Egley’s early works were illustrations of literary characters. He studied under his father who was also an artist. He was a miniaturist. Egley is known for his painting of Prospero and Miranda from Shakespeare’s The Tempest.
William Maw Egley Biography
His other works were influenced by William Powell Frith, who was part of an artists’ cruel known as The Clique.
Egley’s style of painting was centered around domestic and childhood subjects. he still counted to illustrate literary characters.
Themes of William Maw Egley’s Paintings
Egley’s paintings had humorous scenes of the urban and rural society. He tried to not to exaggerate the subjects of his paintings.
He showed importance to the outfits worn by his subjects. However, Egley’s style was criticized as clumsy. Egley wanted to portray contemporary life as it was.
Omnibus Life in London
Omnibus Life in London was one of the most popular paintings by Egley. This painting was first exhibited at the British Institution in 1859. Egley took 44 days to paint this piece of painting.
The painting depicts a horse-drawn carriage which was prevalent in London since the beginning of the 19th century and was popular due to the affordable cost of this mode of transport. It was said that Egley painted parts of the painting at different places.
The inside of the bus was painted at a coach builders yard in Paddington in London. The back of the bus was painted from the chemists’ shop near where Egley lived. The view at the back of the bus was inspired by Westbourne Grove.
To get the most natural effect, Egley had people pose for him in a makeshift bus. There has been a representation of every class on the bus.