Monday, July 30, 2012

Changing my shop name!

I decided to change my Etsy shop name to Georgia Dunn Studio!

WAIT! Calm down, let me explain.

I joined Etsy as a buyer, and registered my username as my typical email/twitter/aim login Pseudooctopus. It's a nonsense word I made up when I was 18, a noun meaning an imposter octopus. I love octopi, I love silliness, it's a great username. As a shop name, not so much. However, it was my username on Etsy, and so I was stuck. A few months ago they finally gave folks the option of changing their shop name once if they wished.

And oh, how I wished.

Right from the beginning when blogs interviewed me or shared my work, they referred to me the person as Pseudooctopus. Not my shop, which would have been fine, but me. Like I was called Pseudooctopus.

Angry pig did not approve.

I learned to request they throw my name in there. I want people to remember my name, and associate it with my drawings. I want to, you know, get hired and make money. I never wanted to be known as Pseudooctopus. I'm not a raver, I'm not a DJ, I'm not one of those kids from the 90s' movie "Hackers". "It's the shop's name, not mine," I'd try to explain. I received emails and inquiries dictated "Dear Pseudo,..." (I never received a "Miss Octopus", that might have been warmly welcomed).

Do you know what I see when I try to picture someone named Pseudooctopus?

That's right, whoever this is.

It's just not a professional name. Cool club kid with nightmare glow stick fingers? Yes. A gamer handle, sure. An instant messenger name, of course (yup, Pseudooctopus on AOL--PARTYING LIKE IT'S 1999). A superhero? Uh, AWESOME. A serial killer? Weirdly still works. A children's illustrator? No!

A time traveler? Absolutely. 

It's a lovely word, but difficult to pronounce for folks who have never come across the prefix "pseudo" before. (It's pronounced Sue-doe Octopus). Even intelligent, marvelous people who read it all the time can get it flubbed when actually speaking it. I once dated a gentleman two years before he said my email aloud and casually told the room it was "Pah-said-doe Octopus". Another friend referred to it as "Papa Octopus." Ryan jokingly says it "Soda Octopus."

It's even harder to spell. I blame no one. It's not a real word. It's a whole lot of vowels. Heck, you don't even say the 'P'. Some popular variations included:


I can't even read it straight anymore.

So I found myself with a business hinging on an impossible to pronounce or spell word. Not to mention locked into octopus imagery when it came to branding. (Again, I love octopi, but I like to switch it up now and again too). And that was my crisis. More and more I did not want to include my shop name anywhere. I would read branding articles with a longing heart, desperate to design my own needless stickers and self indulgent mailing labels. (Not kidding. You folks are going to get so many adorable coupons and tiny animal portrait freebies in your print packages when I am free to brand it up. I HOPE YOU BITCHES LIKE REAL CUTE STICKERS; I AM GOING TO MAKE IT RAIN REAL CUTE STICKERS).

Today I put feelers out on the social networks. I stated my dilemma on Twitter and Facebook, and asked for honest feedback. I received a lot of thumbs up from customers, friends, and friend/customers on the name change. A few folks resisted. One particularly saddened friend who I won't name here (it was Destry) texted me that he felt like the pseudooctopus was going away. But that's not the case, and I comforted that anonymous friend (Destry) in a text message saying, "but it was never meant to be my name. I always thought of the pseudooctopus as a mythical creature or imaginary friend. It's still around, it's not gone." And it's still out there folks, guarding my email and Twitter accounts. You can tweet to it anytime!

Now I begin the arduous task of switching my shop, Facebook page, and (yes) blog over to the new name. I am trying my best to just change the domain name on the blog with a redirect link--but I am not certain exactly how it will work. I shall keep you posted, but should you find this site suddenly amiss, check That will be the new site. It's probably blank right now. 

Unless you're reading this in the future.

What do you think? Good decision to grow my work, reputation, and branding in the long run, or terrible disaster that will ultimately lead to my downfall? YOU MAY CHOOSE NOTHING IN BETWEEN!

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