I recently had the pleasure of chatting to Siren Galicia about her store, The Siren's Lair. She is completely obsessed with mermaids and her obvious love of them shows in the hard work she puts into her creations.
She was kind enough to send me one of her newest creations so I could show you all. She answered a few questions for me so I could get a better feel about her passion for creating and her passion for mermaids.
Blogging things this like is a little out of my comfort zone, but I love a challenge, I just hope I've done it justice!
Would you tell us a little about yourself?
Yes! I'm Siren Galicia, and in second-life I'm a Mer-Designer, and I own a small business called The Siren's Lair. In RL I have a huge obsession with mermaids, and like most who share that obsession or "like" of mermaids, I wanted to be one! and still do in RL anyway!
Where did this "obsession" over mermaids start? or come from?
Well when I was about 2-3 in RL my favourite movie was Disney's The Little Mermaid. My mom said I used to sing all of the sings and spin in circles and go all kinds of crazy when she would put it on for me! She even said I would fall asleep to it, and when she would cut it off, I would wake up suddenly and cry or scream or throw a fit for her to put it back on! But beyond just liking a silly kids movie, deep down I'm not sure why I loved them at THAT point in my life, but now that I'm older, I feel like its more of a symbol for me.
A few years back in RL I was attending the Art Institute of Atlanta, majoring in Illustration, and...we had a home room to report to during our first week on campus.
Well our home room teacher was an African American woman (like myself) who had a bit of an eccentric flair, and she was a very spiritual person, and believed in a lot of positive and negative energy and such. Well in RL I'm not only African American, but I'm multiracial! My mother is (white) and my father is (black)! And in America there is this thing called the one drop rule, its a stigmatization that for some reason if one of your parents is black, then it also makes you black, and not only am I sitting here black, white, mixed, but on top of all of that.. I' also transgender! Now seeing as this teacher was so in tune with all things spiritual I shared with her that I loved mermaids but I NEVER knew why. She gave me a very kind and serious look and told me that mermaids are symbols of transformation.
Now I'm not sure if that's a fact! But i gave it some thought... Mermaids as a symbol, and what they mean to me. And I figured the reason I must be drawn to mermaids so much is because they symbolize EVERYTHING I am as a person! Mermaids are half human half fish! well I'm half black and half white! In stories told around the world some mermaids can leave the water, which is their world or place of stay, and go on land with the rest of the land walking folk, I myself am a bit of a social butterfly, I'm transgender I sort of am like the little mermaid I long for a life that I wasn't born into... I mean the similarities between myself on EVERY level and the stories of mermaids, MATCHED! And I think some where deep down.. that's why mermaids sort of "speak" to me I guess.. I was just meant to be drawn to them, and in a very deep and profound way!
Why the name "The Siren's Lair"?
Well one I LOVE singing in RL, and even they type of music I like reflects what I feel the idea of sirens might sound like... I love opera! and trance, and even the mix of the two, and I love hearing very, very high notes like persons who sing in whistle register like Mariah Carey for example, and the sounds of dolphins and whales who ALSO make clicks and whistles. And I also wanted to have a sort of mystery and enchantment to the name to kind of add to the lore of mermaids the story, the fantasy, the myth.
So I picked The Siren's Lair! THAT and I had named my avatar siren so.... It all again kind of just mixed well together.
So what sort of mermaid or "mer" stuff are you selling in your store?
OMG! umm mer tails mostly! Right now I'm doing a lot of tails based of famous movie mermaids because lots of people who are into mermaids, or mer stuff in general, tend to like certain mermaids, or mermen from movies, or TV shows, and are sort of fans of them! So I wanted to give them something they could buy that was a close replica of their favourite mermaids or mermen from film. But The Siren's Lair or TSL™ I now call it... we do a little bit of everything! from building to RP to fashion there is not much we can't do! And even though the tails I'm currently doing are more of a reflection of tails done by other RL film and TV special effects artists. In their own way my work is unique in the sense that, my version of their work.. is still MY version. So even if it looks alike it's not the original. But aside from doing that at the moment it's also very easy to come up with new totally different concepts that are unseen. But yes! we have mer tails, and a few mesh gowns at the moment. It's small but its a start, I'm trying to take my time with things because I have had to stop business and restart it a FEW times. And also as I improve as an artist I tend to not keep the old art style around for sale so, its constantly a work in progress. But I'm always excited because new ideas are always in the works!
What is your goal as a designer?
My goal is to have something for everyone, and to keep things realistic, and respectful. Because mermaids are such a huge part of me both RL and SL. I tend to shy away from what I have been seeing sort of a lot in the mermaid community here in SL and even in RL! And that's "artistic interpretation" I say it all the time and its also in my profile but, "I don't believe in artistic interpretation of things that already have been defined, It's more of a creative challenge to find creative loopholes or push the envelope... anyone can go totally outside of the box, but a true creative genius can stay in the lines.. and still manage to brake the mould. Be Original.... not obvious!" And I feel very strongly on that. But yes! My goal is just that simple, I mean I'm just so excited about my business even now, though the overall goal is to have something for everyone, one of the goals we have currently is to push more into other lifestyle branches of SL! Fashion is a huge one for example! Mer life or mer in general are seen as a part of "JUST" the RP fantasy community, and with mermaids starting to become a hot topic in RL right now, when would be a better time then to push mermaids into other pools of life and life styles! So short term goals long term goals you name it. The over all effort is to just have something for everyone.
Do you do any custom work?
I only do mer tails and mer swim wear at the moment but I'm also open to do custom things like RP props things your character might need in RP! That sort of thing. However I don't make custom mesh items for people. I use what I find full perms be it sculpted or mesh item, and I purchase it to use as creative material! So anyone could just NC or IM me for details but yes!
Where is your store located?
Currently we don't have an inworld store though we would like to raise funds a bit to purchase the land for one at some point but were in no rush. Were trying to take things slow and one step at a time so for now you can find the store on market place HERE
How many people work with or in your business?
Originally I started alone but I had always wanted this to be a group effort. I wanted to have people work with and for me who believed in me and my art and my vision on the aquatic fantasy community in Second Life. Currently I have a handful of people working with and for me! I was also working with a few models I had picked but I felt that it was a rushed effort and I couldn't keep up nor could some of them so I had to stop on the modelling, I plan on coming back to it later however. And in a way I feel I work side by side with some bigger SL names not directly no, but when you have models there is a certain look I feel designers strive for, and in order to make sure my models represented me in a way that I wanted to be seen I spend money like water to make sure the men and women who have worked for me and will work for me look the best they can, and as a model you always have to have the best skin, eyes, hair, nails, hands and feet even! And with me I'm extremely picky! Being half African American in RL, I shy from stores who offer ethnic colours but not on ethnic features, to be politically incorrect "To see white female/male skins go from light to dark with ethic skin colours, but still have white female/male faces" I don't support that kind of thing, I just personally feel if you have time to make the colour? and you find it beautiful enough to represent, then you should have time to do the face as well, and stop misrepresenting the richness of ethnicity. But yes I work with a handful of people and businesses and what I hope to see at some point is to have hair, skin, mesh items, fashion, cosmetics, etc. ... anything you can think of under TSL™. I want to open the doors for work for models, mesh artists, skin creators, fashion designers, stylists, photographers, magazine and editorial work! Even bloggers! It would be nice to see a team of people come together like a community for a business and have each person show off their own inner fantasy! But so far yes a few have come together to help make this a reality, we all hope for the best.
What does your store currently have in the works?
Well right now were trying to think of our next move, but so far we currently have 2 new releases!
One in which I will be shearing with you today! It's our little mermaid release! You can find it HERE
What do you think the future holds for your business?
Well I'm never curtain it could take off like bubble to the surface, or pop! But what we hope, is that things just over all go well for us. That's really all anyone can do, hope for it, wish on a starfish and push forward LOL.
Anything else you would like to share with us?
Just a big thanks to you for the interview and shoot, and my shoppers, fans and supporters.
We appreciate everything! And we hope you believe in us, stand by us as a business, help us to be all we can be and Join the SWIM!
You can even find us in search under *TSL* - The Siren's Lair
Join in and find out about new products! Help us with ideas! Give us feed back! Talk to us in group chat! Send us NC's about ideas for cool projects and products! Be a part of the swim in the lair! Get the inside scoop on new everything! And as always... HAPPY SHOPPING!
Outfit - The Siren's Lair - Ariel - 7th Princess Of The Sea
Hair - Truth - Sierra - Marmalade w/roots
Skin - League - Jen Pale - Olive
Hands - SLink - Mesh Hands - Casual (with League appliers)
Pic 1 - Pose - Glitterati - Zodiac - 3
Pic 2 - Pose - CnS Poses - Ground - 2
Pic 3 - Pose - Embody - Heidi - 2