Friday, February 11, 2011

The Night to the Owl

Happy Friday everyone! I'm thrilled to report the sun is out and we're warming up! My fingers can actually type again. Thanks again to my students who braved snow, freezing temps, and bad roads to keep on painting!

I thought if I posted another bird painting this week it should be at least my favorite bird, which is of course (big shock) an owl. This is mixed media on illustration board. Artistically, owls have a wonderful shape and they can symbolize so many things--wisdom, insights, mystery, intuition, longevity, bad omens, night, and even death. (My blog post title today is from Shakespeare's Cymbeline for my fellow English majors out there.)

Since I'm often asked about the origin of my studio name Scarlet Owl I thought this owl-themed post would be a good time to share the story. First, I probably should confess that one of my "other jobs" is a professional namer of products, brands, company, websites, etc. Have you ever eaten a Keebler Bistro Cracker? Yep, that was me. So as a "professional" brander I felt extra pressure to create an art studio name that I really loved and could live with for for a very long time.  

Basically, I knew I wanted a color or pigment name and an animal (or something natural) because I love to paint nature. So the brainstorming began: Mauve Moose, Cerulean Otter, Viridian Octopus, Cobalt Leopard, etc. But, believe it or not, this was during the dot com boom and many of these names were already business names or in one case, a Canadian rock band.

Finally, I thought I had a winner: Red Hawk Studio. I thought it had a sharp, robust, westerny sound. But the more I thought about it, it just wasn't unique enough. So I moved on to other reds and other fowl, and voila, there was like a red spotlight: Scarlet Owl. And a bit unusual but not too weird (at least I hope not) and for me at least it said: Creativity and Wisdom--a ying/yang balance that I thought was perfect for my panting and teaching philosophy. 

As always thanks for "giving a hoot" (sorry I couldn't resist) and stopping by. Have a great weekend and happy painting from my nest to yours!    


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