When I finished with the French hen I was excited to finally put the ornament together. I started to place them on the egg-shaped wreath and see what the composition would look like. The more I played with it, the more I thought about it, the symmetry I longed for in the beginning was not working so well. Somehow the pair was lacking something. So I started to doodle and play with different ideas. And suddenly I had this vision. What if the ladies would have a mate? What if I made a rooster for them?
I made a quick sketch, doodled a bit. One thing I was certain of: the rooster will have to be similar in style to the French hen. So the general body shape and some of the style elements would have to match, but other then that I was on my own.
I researched a bit for inspiration. I looked at so many rooster pictures my head was dizzy. I ended up falling in love with the style of this one in particular. Not just the colors, but the playfulness of the story that the picture depicted. But the more I looked at it, the more I had this strange deja vu feeling. As if I’ve already seen it before. I looked at the details of the drawing and that’s when it hit me: the picture that I was looking at was from a book that I used to read as a child. A book illustrated by a famous Hungarian illustrator, Károly Reich. What a small world!So this is what I came up with. I used Larissa Holland’s original concept for a French hen as an inspiration. Then I added those style elements from the drawing that I thought would make this rooster more manly, more like the king of the yard. Like the crown-like comb, the multi-layered neck piece which I’m thinking of accenting with beads, or the feathery tail, the spurs. A big proud chest.
There is one thing that I’m on the fence about though. I am not sure what to do with the wing. On one hand I think as a male the rooster’s wing should be more subtle then the hen’s. Ladies first, right? And then again, in the animal kingdom the males are always more colorful, more vibrant, because that is how they are able to attract the attention of the female. So the more I think about it, the more I am drawn to go all the way. Oh baby, I’m going to bring out the bling!