Today we’re joined by Red. Red is a wonderful visual artist who specializes in digital mediums. She is also an aspiring author. Red also happens to be a first for Asexual Artists: she’s a pet stylist who specializes in creative grooming. It’s clear that she’s an artist with an admirable amount of passion and enthusiasm, as you’ll soon read. My thanks to her for taking the time to participate in this interview.
Please, tell us about your art.
I’m a digital artist (Hobbyist) and an aspiring author. I draw monsters and Pokémon, and I write short horror stories mostly. Also not sure if this is considered an art, but I’m a pet stylist who focuses on creative and Asian Fusion grooming (Non-contest grooming). That’s what pays the bills)
What inspires you?
All sorts of things inspire me. I find inspiration in things that happen in my life, colors I see in the world, or even just random thoughts. Music is the biggest inspiration, though. When it comes to my digital art, I can’t draw unless there’s music that goes with whatever piece I have in mind playing!
As far as the dogs go, I’m completely inspired by cuteness. I groom to make the dog look as adorable as possible!
What got you interested in your field? Have you always wanted to be an artist?
As far as writing, I always used to want to be an author. I was an avid reader since I could read, and I had such a vivid imagination that writing just came naturally. It’s something I’ve always loved.
Drawing, on the other hand, I got into later on in life, honestly I started drawing because I used to play on Neopets as a kid, and I wanted to draw my pets. I also did a lot of roleplaying back in the day, and I didn’t feel comfortable using images from google to represent my characters, so I wanted to start drawing my own art to represent my characters. I can’t say I’ve ever wanted to be an artist on a professional level, especially since my confidence in my art is pretty low, but I’m always improving, and someday I might even open up my work for commissions online!
I’ve also always wanted to work with dogs, but grooming wasn’t my first choice. I exhausted other options, like being a veterinarian and dog trainer, and found art and inspiration when I tried grooming dogs. It’s a great way to work with dogs and be creative as well, and I’m excited to actually work at a school now and teach creative grooming!
Do you have any kind of special or unique signature, symbol, or feature you include in your work that you’d be willing to reveal?
I’m not really sure if I do… As far as writing goes, I tend to stick to horror and scary stories, and a lot of my stories come from daydreams, or actual dreams or nightmares…
Other than that, I couldn’t think of anything that is special or unique about either of my mediums of art. I just do this because I enjoy it.
(Jokingly, my coworkers say they can always tell when I groom a dog because the hair that hangs over the eyes is left long and the muzzle is always very round, while everyone else takes both of those short)
What advice would you give young aspiring artists?
Don’t compare yourself to other people’s art, unless you’re actively trying to develop your style and you’re looking at different examples of that style. Even then, your style will never match up 100% to anyone else’s, because everyone has their own way of doing something. Even if you don’t think your art is that great, in whatever form it may be, just remember that not only do you have to start somewhere, but there’s honestly probably people out there worse than you at whatever you’re trying to create. Just do art because it’s fun, not to compare yourself, because you’ll only make yourself feel bad if you’re constantly trying to measure up to someone else instead of working on your own style.
And really, there’s art to be found in a ton of places, so if you’re a creative type but don’t feel that professional writing or drawing is for you, there are tons of jobs that can tap into that creative potential in sucha fun and unique way!
Where on the spectrum do you identify?
I identify as Asexual, and I’m not really sure what my romantic orientation is.
Have you encountered any kind of ace prejudice or ignorance in your field? If so, how do you handle it?
Not in the art community, and really I haven’t delved too far into the professional writing area of the world yet to have that come into play. As far as being a pet stylist goes, I’ve had only one person who has been truly ignorant, but she is super sweet and tried to understand. She just doesn’t get orientations that aren’t gay, straight, or bi. The rest of the grooming industry is pretty diverse, and really accepting!
What’s the most common misconception about asexuality that you’ve encountered?
That asexuals don’t love their partner. (I guess to some allos, sex is the same thing as love)
Honestly I feel like my love for my partner is stronger because not only does he understand my asexuality, but I get to focus on other things in our relationship that build a sense of love, trust, and comfort than just sex.
What advice would you give to any asexual individuals out there who might be struggling with their orientation?
You. Are. Not. Broken! And you are not alone! There’s a surprising amount of people in the world who are either somewhere on the spectrum, or really understanding/know about asexuality! When you’re struggling to define yourself and your orientation, it’ll probably be tough, and you’ll think something’s wrong with you, and people might even say there’s something wrong with you, but I promise you there isn’t! Don’t buy into the negativity, and just focus on what you feel in your heart.
Finally, where can people find out more about your work?
I have a DA (CreativeRed), and if you’re interested in some of my writing, you can find a few creepypastas on the wiki, like “For Fear Addicts Like Me” (TW: might cause feelings of dissociation) and “The Lab” (TW: violence, gore. Experimental piece with an emphasis on body horror and gross-out factor). And keep an eye out for my eventual anthology of short horror stories under the same title “For Fear Addicts Like Me”.
Thank you, Red, for participating in this interview and this project. It’s very much appreciated.