Edit: I have since closed my RedBubble account due to lack of time that I’m able to allocate to graphic design. It was a great learning experience, and I choose to keep up this article because it has my thoughts and feelings on the site and it’s good looking back on why I started in the first place.
Some of you might be asking, “What’s RedBubble?”, or “Why are you using that site?” and that’s perfectly fine. I myself was unaware of the website until a few weeks ago when a friend introduced me to it. I’m here to tell you in this blog: 1) about my journey navigating the site, and 2) my own thoughts, feelings, and goals for using the site.
Why is a Writer Using RedBubble?
Before I get into that, a little background on RedBubble is due. RedBubble is a website where you can upload your work and have it printed on clothing, stationary, stickers, pillows, mugs, and so much more. It’s in the same genre as Society6 and other websites that sell to consumers looking for one-of-a-kind, unique products. It’s free to sign up, you set your prices, and you only get paid when something sells. It’s not guaranteed income by any means, but still gives people a creative outlet to showcase their work on. In short, you can create anything you want, put it on any product you want, and allow for other people to purchase the item with your work on it.
With that out of the way; the answer to the original question is quite simple. Though I’m mainly I writer, I’ve also got a voracious appetite for numerous other creative outlets. I enjoy crocheting, knitting, cross stitch, painting, crafting, photography, and anything else I can do in my spare time. I’m a writer by day, but a designer and creative monster by night.
It’s also fair to say that from time to time I do get burnt out on writing. Writing over 56,000 words a month takes a toll, and even I wasn’t prepared with the mental stress and necessary fortitude that comes with my year-long goal. By taking a step back from writing and using my creative skills for a different style of work, I’m able to cleanse my palate and take a short break from the writing world. This allows me to return to my writing with renewed vigor and open eyes. The fact that I take so much joy in creating the book covers for all of my series led me to believe that my skills could be utilized elsewhere as well.
I might be a writer, but I’m also so much more than that. Just like everyone else, I’ve got potential to do anything I set my mind to.
How’s it Going So Far?
At first I was skeptical. There are so many great artists on the website – how was I ever going to stand out? Looking at the front page of RedBubble, I saw amazing works of art that I knew I could never compete with. Yet, the great thing about RedBubble is that not everyone wants to have a detailed work of art on their accessories. People also love clever quotes, beautiful typography, calligraphy, designs, and anything else an artist can think of.
After getting over the learning curve of navigating the site and setting up my works on numerous products (which is quite easy, by the way. After designing something I can have it on 50+ products within minutes!), everything fell into place. I’ve got about 20 or so designs on my account as of today, and more coming with every new idea I have. My main focuses for now are English phrases and quotes and Japanese words or phrases. Since I’ve been studying Japanese while living and working in Japan, I feel it’s time to broaden my horizons and try my hand at showing the beauty I find in the language.
In that sense, RedBubble has been a blessing of convenience to showcase my works. I haven’t tried any other product+artwork sites beforehand, and feel that I don’t have the need to do so now that I’ve found RedBubble.
Why Use RedBubble?
Honestly? It fits my preferences. It’s simple to upload my work, set it on the products exactly how I want it, and showcase what I’ve done in a clean, beautiful way. The entire website is so easy to use that I’m amazed I never thought of doing something like this before.
If you want something simple, easy, and worthwhile, I’d suggest giving RedBubble a try. ((Disclaimer: I am *not* sponsored to be saying this about the site. I honestly just love the layout, features, and ease of use enough to talk about it on my website… Sorry if it seems spammy!))
What Are You Hoping to Get Out of This?
The most important thing I want to get out of using this site is expanding my designing talents. I love making something out of nothing, whether it’s with writing, drawing, etc., and RedBubble seems to be a pretty fun way to do so. I’m also keen on purchasing some of the things I make since I love how they turn out. Is that bad? Buying the stuff I make? I wouldn’t think so. As of now I want to create things that I like and would be proud to show to others, so it makes sense that I would want them for myself as well.
I’m hoping that I don’t go broke from buying all the things I make, and that others might find happiness from my work; which, coincidentally, is the same goal I have with my writing.
What Can We Expect to See in the Future?
My monthly goal for RedBubble (which may be increased or decreased due to my schedule for the month) is to make 40 new and unique works. I’m hoping that 20 of those will be Japanese words and phrases, and the other 20 English. I’m also going to do an ‘explicit’ collection of both English and Japanese. Thankfully these aren’t shown on RedBubble unless someone agrees to see them, so I’m happy knowing that people can still enjoy my less provocative works.
Overall Thoughts and Future Goals
RedBubble might just be the beginning for me. I’m also considering starting a Patreon account, which would be even better now since I could have stickers from RedBubble included in some of the subscription tiers. I’ll also be putting up my podcasts by the end of the month (if all goes well and I get my microphone situation figured out), so that’s something to look forward to as well!
Even though I have a full-time job and numerous other responsibilities, I hope to someday make my dream of creating something new everyday into a sustainable career. Of course, in order to hone in on what I’m great at, I’ll just have to expand my circle of creativity and give it all I’ve got! I hope that everyone can do the same and find time to do things that they enjoy.