RE: What does ‘ doing research ‘ mean to you ?
I don't have much else to add to what's already been said, but yeah soul-searching and documentation then traditional research is what I'd say. If I didn't look animals up at all, I don't think I would have found my kintype. After I had taken a lot of notes and reflected on them I didn't know any animals that matched what I was feeling. However, it was really helpful to be able to look back on my journal for notes/experiences to help stay true to myself when googling animals.
Make sure your words are tender
for one day you may have to eat them