I think this was another bird I did on my lunch break with a reference book at the Oakland Public Library. I love that place.
Why, halfway through the year did I throw in a scientific name? I don’t know. So few of the other drawings have the scientific name because I didn’t want to get it wrong. I love science, but I’m no expert. I’m just an avid appreciator of experts. So yeah- there’s a random genus species for you. Hope it’s right.
If the boat-billed heron drawn on this same day reminded me of a Muppet, then this bird certainly reminds me of another Jim Henson creation: the Skeksis. I’m sure Mr. Henson was inspired by vultures in their design – few creatures are more revolting.
Oh man, I love Jim Henson and I love pretty much everything he did: but the Dark Crystal left a serious impression. I watched it when I was young enough to truly and unabashedly believe in magic, and the creatures on-screen moved me deeply. So the Skeksis (the bad guys) haunted me. I thought nothing could be creepier. My dad would drive me crazy by making their high squeaky moan/whine noise. And then he would giggle to himself when I clasped my hands over my ears and screamed for him to stop. Ah, the joys of torturing your kids.
The wrinkles and folds were fun to draw and a little infuriating. I kept getting lost and losing track – which wrinkle was I on? Does it bend left now, or wait – was I already to the fifth turn?
I thought I’d draw the dodo because I remember it from Alice in Wonderland, and because it’s such a bizarre-looking bird. But this drawings suffers from a lack of source material. Every other drawing I did was from a photograph. Unfortunately, the dodo was wiped out before cameras were readily available. So doing a drawing from drawing was problematic, to say the least. I am not thrilled with the results.