Thursday, December 8, 2011

Diary of a Trailblazer: Well Isn't This Cheery.

I'm a kinesthetic person - I tend to think of things in terms of shape and sensation.  And so if you asked me what motivates me to paint, I'd tell you it feels like the inspiration comes out of a tube in the middle of my chest.  But my chest is also where my emotions seem to sit, and when I'm stressed or sad or angry those negative feelings cause a blockage and everything gets all backed up.

Recently, I sat down to paint and nothing happened.  It's not that I lacked ideas.  I go through periods where ideas avalanche down on my head faster than I can get 'em onto canvas, and I always write the extras down so I don't forget them; I have literally pages of them.  I knew what I wanted to paint and I was sitting there with a blank canvas balanced in my lap and a paintbrush in my hand and I literally couldn't make my arm move.

My first reaction (as usual) was to yell at myself to fucking DO SOMETHING JUST DO IT COME ON.  When that didn't work, it occurred to me that I probably had a wad of sticky emotional crud pluggin' up my arthole.  So I stopped pressuring myself to execute the specific idea I'd sat down to paint, and instead sat there as calmly and non-judgementally as possible and waited to see what would happen.

And lo, like the cryptic fortune in a Magic 8-Ball, a series of images floated to the surface of my mind.  Suddenly, my paintbrush-hand was able to move again; it wanted to paint what I'd seen.  To wit:

And now I'm unblocked again, for the time being.  But I've also realized that I've been squishing down a lot of fear.  

Basically, I've been trying to deal with the reality that my future is very much up to chance.  I'd like to believe that if I work hard enough - if my paintings are prolific and amazing and I offer excellent customer service - I'll end up successful, but the bottom line is that I can't make anyone buy stuff.  I can only maintain and promote my store as best I can, and the rest is just...luck.  This idea doesn't sit well with my inner compulsive planner/control freak, hence the image of a fist clenching so hard that blood drips out.

Just to be clear, I don't for one moment regret quitting my day job to do art full-time. These past few months have been fucking amazing!  And that is the problem: I don't want to give up this freedom, but if my savings run out before I'm making a living wage at the art thing, I may have to.  And there's nothing I can do about it.  And that sucks.  And the suckitude built up and up and up until finally I had to paint a woman so filled with viscous black goo that it's forcing itself out of every orifice in her head.  

I suspect both paintings are basically a letter from my subconscious:

"Dear Meredith

You are repressing a lot of dark icky thoughts.  You need to address them before you self-destruct.  SERIOUSLY.

Your Superego."

I...don't actually know how to address my feelings of overwhelming...ness.  But I guess even acknowledging that I feel them is a start.


Let's all stop thinking about angsty shit and daydream about something nice instead.  Like sushi!  Or paintings of sushi.  Or how quirkily wonderful my paintings of sushi would look on your wall.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Caturday: GET A JOB, BIRCH!

The Boy and I have an Ikea Expedit in our living room*.
EXPEDIT Bookcase, birch effect Width: 58 5/8 " Depth: 15 3/8 " Height: 58 5/8 " Max load/shelf: 29 lb  Width: 149 cm Depth: 39 cm Height: 149 cm Max load/shelf: 13 kg
It looks like this, only crammed full of books, knicknacks, and a bunch of The Boy's lingerie and wigs.
A few days ago, The Boy completely cleared out one of the second-row compartments so Birch would have his very own fort.  He stuck Birch in there and Birch got all huffy about it...

...for about fifteen seconds.  

Judging by his body language, the progression of his thoughts went something like, "HEY!  Don't pick me up and put me places, jackass.  You're not the boss of me!  I'm a cat and I go where I wanna go!  ...Is that a view of the couch?  That's kinda cool, actually.  What am I, like, two feet off the ground?  Sweet!  And I like the low ceiling...very cosy.  Y'know what?  It's awesome in here!  I'm gonna settle in and make myself comfortable."
"...Reeeeeeeeeeeally comfortable."

And from that point onward, Birch hung out in there all the time.

We were referring to that space as Birch's "compartment" until The Boy randomly used the word "cubicle" instead...and inadvertently opened up a whole new world of hilarity.  Birch's "compartment" is now his "office" and when we pass by, we make jovial quips at him like, "Logging some overtime, Birchy?"  "Sleeping on the job, Birchy?"  "Frank from Accounts Payable filed a sexual harassment complaint against you and HR is asking for your voluntary resignation, Birchy" or "I'm promoting you to Vice President of Cuteness!"   

Birch somehow fails to see the humour in any of this.  Maybe he's been working too hard.  

I should probably encourage him to use some of his vacation days.

*Yes, we routinely refer to it as "the Expedit", and yes, this makes us feel like pretentious douchebags.  But when one of us misplaces something there, it's easier for the other to say "You left it on the Expedit" than "You left it on the big shelving unit with all the square compartments."


Have you seen the "furmaids" in my Artfire store yet?  These original paintings of housepets with mermaid-tails make wonderful, whimsical gifts for pet owners!  And until December 31st, you can use coupon code SHESAIDPOPBLOG at checkout to get 15% off your first purchase!

My Heart, it Soars!

Today I got an email from a customer that said, "I wanted to let you know that the bacon ornaments arrived and are SPECTACULAR.  I love them.  Thanks!"

Receiving that wonderful feedback put me absolutely over the moon.  I love that people are appreciating what I make!  Not to mention that this person took time out of their day just to email me saying something nice.  I felt so fabulous that before I went out to run some errands, I put on my new human-heart-soaring-through-the-air necklace to broadcast my lighthearted mood to everyone I passed*.

This necklace is a Zazzle creation made from one of my paintings - I got it in the mail on Friday.  I'm super-excited because I love dramatic, funky, colourful jewellery and this certainly fits the bill!  It came out fantastically vibrant and detailed, and when I wore it to the store I felt like a million bucks!

Originally, I designed this necklace as a "private product"...just for me.  But when I got home from the store today, I thought you guys might like the chance to own a human-heart-with-wings necklace, too!  So I made the design "public" and here you go! :)

You give my heart wings necklace
You give my heart wings by SheSaidPop

It's displaying a square version, but the necklace does come in "round" as well; you can see your options by going to the Zazzle listing and clicking "choose your style and size" on the right side of the screen.  Zazzle necklaces are plated with swanky sterling silver!  

BUT!  D'you wanna know a secret?  My necklace - the one I'm wearing in the photo up there - is actually a keyring with the ring pried off and my own chain added on!  Zazzle's keyrings are the exact same product as their pendants, except made of plain silver-coloured metal.  If you're not fussy about your jewellery being sterling, this option will save you some cash (plus, y'know...maybe you're actually shopping for a keyring).  This one comes in square or round versions, too.

In summation: I'm in a great mood today, and I'm using my sternum as a canvas on which to express this.  And you can, too!

*I'm a big believer in lucky talismans of various kinds.  I might wear or carry something with a happy theme to show that I'm happy, or because I'm sad and hoping to turn my mood around.  Maybe these "lucky objects" make a difference and maybe they don't, but they can't hurt!**

**Unless your "lucky object" is a really big butt plug.  Then all bets are off.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Adventures in Vertigo

On Tuesday night, for no discernible reason, my head started feeling spinny.

And as time passed, it got worse and worse.

Now, let me just say, when I was a kid I used to stand in the middle of the living room and twirl around and around because I enjoyed the little rush of dizziness I got in my head when I stopped.  I know dizziness, folks, and this...was not it.  This was magnitudes beyond.  It felt like the actual floor was jerking from side to side at unpredictable intervals.  I kept randomly lurching and having to catch my balance.

And then...I checked my email and saw that I'd gotten a new Artfire order!  I stumbled wonkily out to the living room to tell The Boy the good news.

This is an exaggeration.  But I did flail and ALMOST fall over.
Packing that order was...difficult.  But I managed.  It helped to stay seated and keep my head perfectly immobile.

By the end of the night, the vertigo had reached truly epic proportions.  I've never experienced anything like it.  Any movement of my head, no matter how small, made the room swing wildly around me.  When I lay down in bed to go to sleep, the mattress felt like it was pitching violently up and down like a mechanical bull and I clung to The Boy in abject terror for a good five minutes, waiting for it to pass.

He is remarkably solid and reassuring for one so dainty.
The next morning, the spinny feeling seemed to have spread from my head and into my eyes as well - the harder I tried to focus on anything, the more swimmy it became.  It felt as though my eyeballs were twirling in opposite directions...and the floor was still randomly jolting under my feet.

And there was still that order to mail out.

I considered waiting another day to go to the post office.  Maybe I'd feel better by then.  But - and this was a terrifying thought - what if I felt worse? Like, so bad that I couldn't even stand up?  I couldn't take the chance of keeping my customer waiting.

So, I went.

The sidewalk felt like one of those bouncy-houses you can rent for kids' parties, and I was staggering like a drunk, but I got that package mailed in a timely fashion.  And I didn't crack my head open on the sidewalk or get hit by a car!  I arrived home radiant with triumph and nauseous with motion sickness, and immediately fell asleep for five straight hours.

Today, the ground feels solid again...but so do my sinuses.  I'm guessing the whole vertigo thing was a rather baroque first stage of a cold or flu.  I'm gonna spend the next few days sleeping a lot and see if that helps.


Have you been to my Artfire store yet?  I've recently listed an adorable (and arboreal!) tribute to Bob Ross.  Happy!  Little!  Trees!

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Let's Hear it for The Boy!

I think everyone has a decade they never really got over.  For me, it's the '80s.  I can't help it; neon colours and synthesizer music comprise some of my first memories (in 1980, I would've been seven years old) and I guess I just imprinted on them like a little baby duckling.  Big hair and poufy skirts give me pangs of nostalgia to this day.

I mention this because the Boy has chin-length, naturally curly hair and he recently got me to shave the sides off.  I have discovered that when he flips all his remaining hair to one side, it cascades asymmetrically into his face.  You guys!  It's like the lead singer from Simply Red and the lead singer from Information Society had a really hot quasi-goth baby!

The hotness is so palpable, it's not even subjective anymore.  It's scientifically provable.  Here, I'll show my work:

I've triple-checked the math and it's definitely accurate.

Now if only The Boy would take singing lessons, learn to play keyboards, and start up a synthpop band, I could die happy.

Aw, who am I kidding, I'd settle for him putting on some eyeliner and lipsynching badly to Depeche Mode in our living room. IN FACT I'M GOING TO ASK HIM TO DO THAT RIGHT NOW.


While I'm in the next room being gyrated at, please feel free to amuse yourselves by browsing my Artfire store.  There are 70 items in there now - including a totally radical painting of an asymmetrical '80s-style wig on a stand!

Tons of new stuff in my Artfire store!

Remember how I said I was starting to come out of my latest anxiety/paralysis thingy and get shit done?  Since then I've listed TWENTY new items in my Artfire store.  BOO-YAH!

I'm not going to show you each individual thing (like I usually do when I list a new painting) 'cause that all that copying/pasting/linking is just way too much work.  But here's a quick little sample screenshot to tempt your eyeballs and pique your curiosity:

I've also added a new section in the store called "Androgyny and Kink".  So far there are five paintings in there: three of The Boy's pouty, sexy lips in shiny dark purple lipstick, one painting of a skull and crossdongs* that says "Ass Pirate" on it, and the BDSM robot you may remember from that one Zazzle holiday card I made.  Stay tuned because there are more kinky and androgynous paintings on the way!  I will not rest until I have painted The Boy's fine ass in a pair of panties and forced everyone I know to look at it and acknowledge its hotness**.

*Not a typo. :)
**My life goals are...different from other people's.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Caturday: My Favourite Furmaid

I've been kinda trapped in one of my anxiety loop thingies for a while, but I seem to be breaking out of it.  I got a whole bunch of image editing done recently, and today I made a new listing on Artfire that cat people should really enjoy (hence my posting this on Caturday).  

[Drumroll, please..........]

Ta daaaa!  Click here for the full listing!

I call this creature a furmaid - part furry animal, part mermaid*.  I really love how this one turned out!  I've painted five or six furmaids so far (a few cat ones and a dog) - the rest should be appearing in my store over the next few days.  Happy Caturday, everyone!

And don't forget that until December 31st, you can use the code SHESAIDPOPBLOG at checkout to get 15% off your first purchase. :)

*I know, I know.  Etymologically speaking, I should've gone with "catfish" or "mercat" or something like that.  But those options don't sound cute or rhyme with anything so meh.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Look What The Boy Made Me!!!

I challenged The Boy to draw me as if I were on Futurama and the results are more awesometastic than I ever could have imagined!  Look!  LOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOK!!!!
I just figured he was gonna draw a boring ol' full-body portrait of me in a Matt Groening-y style, but this is so much better!  The head-in-a-jar thing pinpoints this as Futurama fan art.  Not Matt Groening fan art, not some random cartoony-looking drawing.  FUTURAMA.  And I love it. <3


I haven't tried my hand at Futurama fan art (yet...).  I do however have five paintings of shiny, futuristic robots for sale right now in my Artfire store!  And if you use the coupon code SHESAIDPOPBLOG at checkout, you'll get 15% off your first purchase.  The code expires on December 31st, though, so you'd better get crackin'!
Pop art pin-up - robot mermaid - original acrylic painting 4x4 inches

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Caturday: Barfing is Srs Bsns.

This whole post is about throwing up.  It's not super-graphic, but I'm warning you anyway just in case you're really, really bothered by that sort of thing.

Today I woke up to the sound of Birch preparing to throw up on the floor next to the bed.  With lightning-quick reflexes, I seized a nearby roll of paper towel and unfurled it under his face.

Now, maybe I'm abnormal or something, but every time I've ever vomited it kind of caught me off-guard.  It's like my stomach decided to throw me a horrible surprise party but it couldn't find any confetti so it tossed partially digested peanut M&Ms and Diet Pepsi into the air instead.  Surprise!

I didn't have to concentrate on vomiting.  It just happened.

Cats and dogs are different.  I have never seen anyone fixate as single-mindedly on a task as a dog or cat does when it has to puke. A heart surgeon or bomb defuser couldn't achieve such focus.  And god forbid you should try to intervene once the puke cycle has been engaged; from what I can tell, animals believe that their nausea actually freezes time, and disproving this by touching them or moving anything will throw them into a spiral of confusion and rage.

So of course when I put the paper towel down, Birch's little peanut brain couldn't deal with the cognitive dissonance ("I wuz gonna barf on the carpet where did the carpet go I haz to find it") and he tried - still violently heaving, mind you - to walk away.  I gently held his shoulders to keep him centred over the paper towel and he was like, "FUCK OFF I HAZ TO GO BARF ON THE CARPET" and he squirmed (and heaved) and struggled (and heaved) and finally forcibly pried my hand off him using his hind claws.  During this whole thing, he remained staring at the floor with that insane level of focus; I don't think he even consciously knew I was holding on to him, he just knew that something was interrupting the puke cycle and it had to be stopped, so some kind of autopilot kicked in.

Birch did end up barfing onto the paper towel, by the way; it happened before he had a chance to go anywhere.  Also, all that came up was foam - no trace of kibble.  Maybe I managed to disrupt his process after all. 


Well, that was gross.  Here, soothe yourself with this picture of an adorable robot - just one of many amazing original paintings available in my Artfire store.  Use the code SHESAIDPOPBLOG at checkout to get 15% off your order!

Cute confused robot pop art - bright fun original painting 4x4 inches

Monday, November 14, 2011

A card for that special someone who enjoys consensual beatings.

I just realized I forgot to do a blog post for my latest Zazzle card!

This card has my painting of a sadistic robot on the front.  The robot is wearing a leather chest-harness and has a flogger for a hand.  Inside the card, in a computery-looking font, it says "The BDSMulator's sensors have detected naughtiness.  Prepare for festive asswhupping."  On the back it says "Season's beatings!"

If you want the card to say something different, though, you can easily change it up!  It's fully customizable.
Santa's robotic helper card
Santa's robotic helper by SheSaidPop

Merry kinkmas, everyone!

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Caturday: Odds and Ends

The Boy quit his job about a month ago and is home for the time being. His previous work schedule was the main way I kept track of what day of the week it was, so now I never know what the hell is going on.  But it has come to my attention that today is Caturday, so here are three Birch stories for you.

1) We have a grid-shaped shelving unit against one wall of the living room.  One of the lower "holes" is relatively empty, and yesterday Birch was staring at it like he was thinking of climbing in there.  The Boy, in turn, was nonchalantly keeping an eye on Birch while sloooowly moving toward the big wooden storage box I've been using for a coffee table.  Oh yeah...I knew where this was going.  I said, "Don't brick him in there, Edgar Allen Poo" and The Boy sheepishly sat back down again.

2) One thing I really appreciate about Birch is that he's so laid-back.  My dog Merle always took it personally if I (or anyone) accidentally clonked him or tripped over him - he'd immediately cower and look at me like "Why did you hurt me?  What did I do wrong?" and it was heartbreaking.  Birch, conversely, seems to understand that sometimes shit happens and it's nothing personal.

Example: the other night in bed I went to shift sleeping positions, not realizing Birch was near me, and basically drove both of my knees into his spine hard enough to slide his whole body up by about a foot and a half.  I felt horrible, and immediately apologized and gave him some pets - but Birch basically shrugged and said "We're cool" and went right back to sleep.  I'm glad this stuff doesn't traumatize him because it happens kind of a lot. :P

3) The other day Birch was being all Crazy Cat (you know, that thing cats all do where they start zipping around the house and attacking imaginary prey) and it was seriously impeding our DVD-watching, so The Boy grabbed Birch and force-cuddled him in an attempt to mellow him out.  At first, I thought it was working; Birch wasn't meowing or struggling, so I assumed he'd forgotten about the imaginary mousies and had contentedly settled into The Boy's embrace.  But then I caught sight of his face.  It was not the face of a happy kitty.

The sheer impotent rage in Birch's expression made me laugh my ass off, which made him even madder.  Taking his picture certainly didn't help his mood, either.  But I had to preserve the moment. 

Good thing Birch isn't the vengeful sort or I'd be in the hospital, typing this entry with my stumps.


Have you seen the holiday items in my Zazzle store yet?  You should go take a look!  My two snowman cards have each been called "The best holiday card ever!" by different people. There's also a card with a BDSM robot on it for your friends who are into consensual beatings.  And you can customize any of them with whatever words you want!

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Because inappropriately-placed root vegetables are funny.

ATTENTION, PERVERTS OF THE INTERNET: you can now buy ornaments on Zazzle featuring my painting of an aroused snowman!

Very happy snowman ornament ornament
Very happy snowman ornament by SheSaidPop

These ceramic ornaments are super-cool because they can be printed on both sides!  I've left one side blank so you can customize it with words or pictures if you'd like*.  I'd also like to point out that these ornaments aren't only for your Christmas tree - they'd also look stylin' hanging from your rear-view mirror, living room ficus, or anything else on which you could conceivably hang a decorative object.  Be creative!

The ornaments also come in other shapes and styles: just go to the Zazzle listing, click the orange "Customize it!" button, and click on "choose your style" to see the wide range of awesomeness available to you!

*Some suggestions to get you started: 
Christmas 2011
May your holiday season explode with joy!
Someone sure does love winter...
Who wants cream of carrot soup?

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Gay disco Christmas extravaganza!!!!

I've made another snowman-themed holiday card on Zazzle!  This one has six snowmen dressed as disco divas/gay icons The Village People.  The front says "Don we now our gay apparel" and the inside says "Wishing you a very Mary Christmas!" but those are just suggestions, really - you can feel free to delete the text or change it to something else.

In fact, since the gay disco snowmen themselves are not inherently Christmasy, you can make this card suit lots of different occasions just by changing up the text.  And if you buy more than ten cards, you get a pretty sweet bulk discount.

p.s. Painting these Village People snowmen has taught me an important life lesson: it's fucking hard to paint tiny little mustaches and hats.  I hope you appreciate what I go through in order to make you nice things.  *Sniff*

Saturday, November 5, 2011

A naughty holiday card by yours truly!

Okay, I admit it, for the past couple of months I've kinda let my Zazzle store fall by the wayside as I focused on filling my Artfire store with original work.  But the other day I got an idea for a painting that just had to become a holiday card...annnnnd voila!  
A very happy snowman card

Yup, it's a snowman with a carrot "erection".  Classy!  

Also!  Did you know that Zazzle products can be CUSTOMIZED?  You can totally add your own caption or greeting on top of the snowman picture!  The inside of the card says "May your holiday season explode with joy!" but you can easily change or delete this, too, if you want.  

I should also probably mention that Zazzle gives bulk discounts - and you don't have to buy identical items to get a discount, just the same kind of item!  So, for instance, if you bought ten snowman-with-a-carrot-penis cards you'd save 50 cents per card, even if you customized each one for a different pervert in your life.*  

Anyhoo, I hope you guys like this card.  I may be adding more designs soon; the ideas for amusing snow-people just keep on coming!

*Or you could get the discount by buying one of my snowman cards and then nine cards from other Zazzle sellers, but that's crazy talk.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Conversational Snippet #18: BOYS ARE WHERE COOTIES COME FROM.

Boy: Do you wanna join me in this bath?

Me [wincing]: I...can't do that. It grosses me out.

Boy: But we've bathed together before...

Me: Yeah, but I was always in the bathtub first, so that makes it okay; my germs neutralize your germs.  If you're in there first, your body taints the water, turning it into a hot, festering stew of dirt, skin cells, and microorganisms, and I can't bring myself to get in there with you. I realize that this only makes sense in my head.

Boy [completed unfazed and unoffended]: Okay then.

When it comes to weirdo obsessions charming idiosyncracies, this bathtub thing is just the tip of my particular iceberg.  I think even the most well-adjusted person in the world has at least one or two weird quirksthough.  Tell me yours!


More tributes to my budding OCD can be found in my Artfire store.  Enter the code SHESAIDPOPBLOG at checkout to save 15% on your first purchase!

(This is a painting of sugar cereal!  The caption says: I always save the marshmallows 'til the end.)

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

I get by with a little help from my friends!

My first couple of Artfire sales came from friends of mine.  This makes sense, since my friends were the first people to know I'd opened a store and many of them already knew and loved my work.  Recently, though, I've gotten a couple of orders from folks whose names aren't familiar to me - which is exciting on a whole new level!

Did these new customers find me randomly on Google?  Possibly...but I think it's more likely that they found me through some sort of referral.  All else being equal, a person would probably rather give their money to a kind-of-known entity than to an anonymous Google result, right Also, in order find my store randomly you'd have to Google phrases like, I dunno, "cupcakes used as a metaphor for boobs" or "fortune cookie that disparages your sexual prowess" and I don't really see this happening.

I'm doing what I can to get the word out about my store, of course; I'm blogging and tweeting and Facebooking and trying to remember to mention my art to strangers whenever there's an opening (today when I was at the post office sending off my latest order, the lady behind the counter chatted with me about what I was sending and I ended up giving her a business card!  True story).  But frankly, I'm a gigantic awkward dork who finds the whole self-promotion thing pretty difficult at times; left to my own devices, I would take a long time to find and recruit any new fans.

Luckily for me, I have small army of amazing friends - not to mention the smartest, funniest, bestest Facebook fans ever* - and they've been giving me wonderful shoutouts on Facebook and Twitter and who knows where else.  Someone even submitted my Glitter Bacon Christmas Ornaments to Reddit, causing the number of views to explode in a matter of hours (which actually moved the bacon higher up in Google search results because Google favours pages with a lot of hits!).  By the way, shortly after the Reddit thing happened, I got my fifth sale.  I'm not sure if the two things are related but I'm damn sure all those views can't possibly hurt!

To everyone who "likes" me on Facebook or follows me on Twitter or reads this blog or who ever said anything nice about my art to me or anyone else (and those of you who've bought art from me, of course!) - thank you.  You are my lifeblood; you are the reason why my business is visibly beginning to build momentum and the reason I have the courage to keep on battling the blank canvas even when it's scary and difficult.  For the first time in my life, I'm able to clearly envision a future in which art is my main source of income.  You guys!  This could actually happen!
I'm not sure I've ever felt as happy as I do right now.

*Which reminds me: go "like" my page if you haven't already!  When I reach 100 fans, I'm gonna give away a piece of art - and I'm at 97 right now!