I don't like to name things I make because it can keep a person from really looking at my piece. For instance, let's say I call my piece Offending Totem. The viewer who reads this might start looking at it and thinking "In what way is this a totem?" After looking at the piece for clues and then coming to some hypothesis they might ask, "And how is it offensive?" and so on. In other words, my title both guides the viewer into a critical cul de sac by suggesting it holds the interpretive key to its meaning and it suggests that looking at art is like looking for Waldo. It also focuses too much attention on language and on exegeting what the artist meant by the title instead of really looking at the piece. It reminds me of people who look at clouds and think it's clever to see rabbits and rutabagas. I try to resist this way of looking at things through the lens of something else. As much as possible, I try to take in the unique contours and colors of the clouds as they float before me, to see their freshness and newness. In my own work, I'm primarily interested in things like form, color, texture, and weight, and I'm not interested in making things that remind people of something else that's more familiar to them. I don't want to do anything that might keep them from being attentive to the uniqueness of the pot before them and understanding it on its own terms.
By the way.... Please don't write me and tell me you see the mermaid!