ty, I've got lots of photo studies packed away on my tumblr (I hoard them), so I'll be doing studies every now and then.
I have so many ideas for bird chars but never really have time to flesh them out either. /: I don't like having 'sitting duck' characters where all they do is sit in my gallery forever. Hope you do find the time to create one though!
same, I have been through about 4 bird characters and I can't figure out what to do with them. I think it's the lack of emotion they have and the complexity of the wings and the limited amount of composition they can have without looking cliche.
yeah, true. Birds have such a wide variety of wing patterns and anatomy. Unlike canines which you can mix and match body parts, birds seem to have a tighter form allowing more limited ways you can construct them (unless they're totally make believe.) I don't think you could put cardinal legs on a hawk and get away with it, but you could put corgi legs on a coyote and probably get away with it being 'cute.' With a bird that wouldn't be cute, that would be down right going against function. XD
Emotion is another thing, you're right. It's hard to make a bird smile or make facial expressions without making it look really funky/corny unless you're using their eyelids somehow. They're all noise or body movement.
But maybe that will somehow be an advantage in a story. Instead of sneering, the bird could cree or rustle feathers. idk, so many possibilities.
I've got a sebright chicken char that I've basically untouched for quite some time, but now that I have a real sebright and I think I can make a character out of it.