From what I can tell, this drawing is of a Red-headed Vulture, also known as an Asian King Vulture, Indian Black Vulture or Pondicherry Vulture.
One issue with drawing birds is source materials. I looked through a stack of magazines and in every book on my shelf that might feature photos but all I could find with some animation of form was a tiny photo illustrating a description of what a vulture symbolizes. By the time I'd found that, I sort of forgot what I was originally hunting and just started drawing.
I was not looking for a photo of a vulture at all but rather examples of Gulf of Mexico shore birds. So, after a trip to the library today, I now have a stack of books to root through. We'll see what I come up with.
As usual, one thing leads to another. I seem to be particularly attracted to the movement of birds — in flight, landing, taking off, feeding, and so forth — rather than perch poses.
So what does a vulture symbolize? The vulture is considered feminine and represents the maternal instinct because they were thought to feed their young with their own blood if necessary. Good for Mother's Day!
Unfortunately, the population of this particular variety has been halved every other year since the late 1990's and is now on the Critically Endangered list. In the U.S. there are two sorts of vultures — Turkey and Black — and, I've just been reminded, the California Condor. Old World Vultures are worth a look — colorful and rather magnificent.
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