I’ve always been an era behind the times with what I like. I prefer simpler times, old styles, architecture, books, whatever I can find. I spent a good portion of my childhood in and around my grandparents’ farmhouse from the 1800s.
When I decided to seriously treat my art as more than a hobby, the first thing I did was explore shop names. It was different than naming the publishing company, different from any book title. It had to encompass what I did, what all of my art - written, painted, sketched, or sculpted - was. Since I primarily come up with ideas in the wee hours of the night when dirty dishes, laundry, house and life needs are quieter, with a lot of my work done of dark-hour settings, it had to link to the night.
Every word you can think of as variations of ‘night’ has been used as a business name somewhere. It was discouraging that the first twenty names I came up with wouldn’t work because someone else already claimed them.
I’m not crazy about the naming task of things to begin with and it got even more discouraging when the off the wall combinations I felt pushed to weren’t well received by family. But they weren’t giving me any alternatives either.
So what’s a person to do?
I remembered a review I got for one of my books and a line that basically went like this: a modern writer who doesn’t write modern. I never did figure out exactly what the reviewer meant, since it was on one of my futuristic books, figured it referred to my writing style, but it stuck with me just the same.
My second book had a character who still used the old words for things. So I started exploring old phrases. Old-timers had all kinds of ways of referring to things. Lamp-lighting was what some called dusk. So I explored variations for everything from lamp-lighting to midnight and that’s when I stumbled across owl-lighting and owllight. Since the nocturnal, wise creatures often show up in my art, it seemed fitting, and the best part - it wasn’t used by fifty other small companies. And the family liked it better than the first fifty things I threw at them.
That’s how Owllight Creations got its name.
And then I woke up one morning and… I stepped off the cliff, moved away from all the steady income, the 9-5, the designing and publishing, the soul sucking stuff that kept me from creating much new art for over four years and nothing in a year. This departure from solid ground has not been without doubts, but I am creating again and thrilled to again have opportunities to meet with and do commissions for the people who find joy in my art.