I haven't done many finished wildlife illustrations, but a few years ago I thought I'd try something more polished than just a quick sketch.
There had been a program on one of the wildlife TV channels about African lions. I made a few drawings off the TV screen, and the one below became the starting point for a larger color illustration.
I played around with the staging a little for a more dramatic result (second image).
The final piece was fun to do, even though I don't know beans about watercolor. But sometimes it's a good idea not to be intimidated by a technique and just go for it.