At last my studio has had a good clean up and there is once again space to spread out paper and paint! It's quite a time since I've attempted a 'proper' watercolour so I went back to Hazel Soan's lessons, tentatively finishing my lioness - not wanting to spoil the textures of the dropped in washes and overwork it, but not sure if I've done enough to call it finished.
Then, on a roll and remembering how much I enjoyed painting single ostriches with minimal brushstrokes I searched for these photos I took last year in a mountain pass in the Cape, (I think it was the Barrydale Pass, but we weren't too sure where we were at the time!) when we stopped the car to allow a ...flock?... of ostriches to be herded down the road - not to the B&B where it looks like they're headed, but into the field next door.
I had an idea in my head of the ostriches forming a unified shape with many heads and legs, like this photoshopped version... but the necks and heads looked weird (dancing cobras?) so I added a background - too quickly and impulsively! After all the fast sketching I've been doing, it's hard to slow down and make a carefully considered painting. I do want it to look fresh and loose, but also have believable looking birds and not cartoon characters! It needs some variation in colour too, I think I might try it again.