Red K Elders Interview

Daniel Mirante

Added on November 12, 2023

Red K Elders has honoured us with her time and energy to give an interview into the nature of her skillful, potent and aesthetic imagery that invokes powerful principle archetypes, energies and entities of pan-European and Mediterranean mythologies. We hope dear reader you will enjoy this conversation which seeks to explore deep into the practice of this remarkable artist.

‘Aphrodite’ by Red K Elders


What is your relationship to the histories in your work? Do you regard these histories as living with us to this day or is it a matter of remembrance and exhuming?

It feels to me that the mythologies I’m working with are in a mutually proliferating symbiosis with my own personal myth and history. Yes, there is a sense of deep excavation and re-vivification of these ancient tales through the countless hours of research I make alongside my drawings, but they land and take root in the myth body of my own being in absolutely fresh and unique ways. The myths feel incredibly alive and present, timeless, and urgently seeking to be expressed, to be kept alive, to live on through our hands. So much so that I honour and respect these histories as living beings in their own right; these infinite timeless gods that march on ceaselessly, extending fingers through all time, seeking out the artists, finding new hosts to see themselves through. And in a way, I feel that is the role of the artist, to offer up their own self in devotion, in wholeform sacrifice, to these titanic tales. Maybe myth and story themselves are the true ancient gods.

Barbelo by Red K Elder
Barbelo by Red K Elders

But what happened? How did the importance of these archetypes(?) Beings (?) ‘energies'(?) impress themselves on you with such potency that you are driven to express in such a meticulous way?

I was doing a lot of ancestral explorations and healing work: seeking out, visiting and honouring the graves of my forebears, making visionary journeys through my own bodywork and movement praxis and dreaming expeditions to connect with very ancient ancestors and other forces. Concurrently, I was learning about the spiritual beliefs and folk ways of my people from the British Isles and Scandinavia. I have Robin Artisson to thank for his extensive work in this area. His book ‘An Carow Gwyn’ (2018) opened up for me a plethora of information, and also offered a framework for ritual practise to begin to honour the spirits and beings of my own body and lands. Prior to that I had been doing all these things in my own strange haphazard way over the years, but without really knowing exactly what I was doing, or why.

I started working much more intentionally with Robin’s ritual framework and making regular offerings of devotional practise. I wasn’t even drawing at this time, my creative flow was being expressed through words. Then in 2019, I was working more intensively with Robin in the creation of an oracle (ASKION oracle, via The Blackthorne School). We were learning the ancient histories and ways of invoking Hekate to empower the oracle, and Robin invited us to make a drawing of Hekate as an offering, and a focal point. I hadn’t picked up a drawing pencil in over three years, so I had no idea about my drawing skills. Yet a very clear, simple drawing of Hekate flowed so easefully and perfectly into being, which surprised even myself. I found that quite fascinating, and it really set the foundation for how I would subsequently honour the gods and draw them forth, in this highly ritualised way.

What I found was that the more intentional, the more devotional and the more ritualistic I became, the more the visions and the drawings would surge through me. It feels, rather comically at times, that I have become some kind of open doorway, and that word has gotten round in the unseen realms! I now find myself sometimes possessed by relentless visions, thrashing at my poor mortal form, demanding to be seen. I have had to also learn to stay very focused, take care of myself and draw some strong boundaries too. There is certainly a blessing and a curse to all this work.

Hekate by Red K Elders
Hekate by Red K Elders

When evoking/invoking these deities / forces, how do you personally conceptualise (or not) whether they represent intrapsychic (collective consciousness / species bound) phenomena, or is your view more cosmological in reach? When a theurgist approaches these numinous forces, do they represent powers beyond humanity or within the functioning of our minds and nervous system?

How I personally perceive or make sense of these forces, how I construct them within my own self to be able to relate to them, is to personify them through my drawings, to give them human faces and forms which I recognise and can more easily connect with and speak to. Right now I’m mostly giving them Ancient Greek forms and faces, but I am aware that those are also avatars of older primordial forces. None of this means that I think these deities are human shaped.

Regarding what I feel they actually ‘are’ – I feel them as existing beyond our humanity, but also acting in this world through it – or through all material forms such as trees or rocks, plants, oceans, storms, birds and all the vast panoply of beings of all kinds. My sense of them is as particular currents or streams of force or action, that perhaps best manifest through relationship itself.

Here in the West we exist in a world where discrete objects are elevated to primary importance and the deeply enmeshed and interwoven web of relating that objects all exist within is to a great degree pushed to the background. I mean that is essentially the cause of so much disconnection, ill-functioning and inefficiency in our western systems of governance, of healthcare, social care etc. It is literally dis-integrated, and thus we see it now disintegrating.

But if we bring the entire web of relationship to the foreground instead, and let the edges of the objects blur and sink into the background, I feel here is where we find the true aliveness, the pulse and rippling breath of those great ancient forces. We can connect with this, and learn to flow and align with, to cleave closer to, to gain the outcomes we want. And I don’t mean attempting to impose our tiny human wants or needs on those forces, but leaning into and listening, feeling more closely to what is ‘behind’, and finding the humility to subsume our individuality and offer ourselves in service and complicity to the wants and needs of something greater. In doing that, if we are lucky, we may also find our own needs are fulfilled.

Hermes by Red K Elders
Hermes by Red K Elders

Do you have any guidance for anyone wanting to find their way to their own creative expression?

The place I would suggest anyone begins is meditation. In the wild days of freedom before I had children, I used to do meditate for two hours every day, sitting in silence. It made me feel incredibly clear and precise. If I was even ten minutes short, I would notice the difference in my inner clarity and focus, in the steadiness of my hand.

Meditation seems to reset our baseline stress level to a much lower position, enabling us to handle with ease and grace a much wider range of experiences. It also seems to dissipate and settle much of the ‘noise’ that our culture produces. In the quiet places we find through meditation, we can then more easily attune to the signal in the noise, the pulse of that which silently moves us, the glistening thread of our own deepest fascinations.

By meditation, I don’t mean striving to some goal of being able to sit in diamond-bliss-body enlightenment, and then feeling you ‘can’t meditate’ if you don’t achieve that. I mean just the regular daily practise of coming to your knees and sitting in stillness and silence, with just your self, your breath, and however you are in this moment, on this day, in this body. Noticing thoughts arising, noticing wherever your body feels comfort, discomfort, noticing your own resistance, and just being with it all, arising and moving through.

That IS meditation. That practise of constantly, gently, warmly, bringing our attention back to our breathing, or to a candle flame, or to an image we may be gazing upon, without shame or judgement. Training ourselves to come back to ourselves, over and over, with kindness. Much as we might with a child who wanders innocently too far from the safety of a parent. It’s the repetition of that behaviour that builds the discipline and focus that is so useful – not only in our creative endeavours but in all areas of our lives. It brings the ability to notice our thoughts, and to choose whether or not to follow them. I mean, that in itself is transformational.

For me, learning to relax and let go of thoughts is intimately woven in with letting go of tensions in the body. So as well as seated stillness meditation, I also work a lot more now with movement meditation, and that is another incredibly rich place to explore. But I feel the basic skillset learned in seated still meditation is a fundamental preliminary to that.

Many spiritual disciplines will teach that pure unbroken awareness is our essential true nature. Whatever you choose to believe or call it, I feel this kind of meditative space is a portal that can be incredibly useful to access for all kinds of purposes and benefits. For me it is one of the key ways I journey in through my body to visionary states, but it can also just be accessed as a gentle place of rejuvenation that promotes well-being through our whole lives.




My personal and professional somatic work combines deep inner movement trance with exploring and making extant individual and unique access to creative flow states. 

Furthermore, by adding in ancient ritual technologies, such as those of Greco-Egyptian sorcery found in the 2,000 year old Greek Magical Papyri, I actively court and invite spirit possession to create pencil drawings where the forces invoked may literally ‘see themselves through my hands’. 

As I continue to deepen these practises, and others come into contact with the finished drawings, I’m seeking to discover whether there is some intangible force that comes into, that infuses and inhabits, and leaps out again from the resulting artworks?


Red is an artist who creates graphite drawings of ancient gods and mythic beings. Her drawing process calls forth deep devotional practise, ritual and movement bodywork, facilitating the ability to move seamlessly between realms.

She also works with individuals and groups practising massage, deep bodywork and movement therapies. Red has many years of experience in creating beautifully held ritually guided movement spaces for creative exploration, healing and play. 

Daniel Mirante is a painter, historian, scholar, teacher and writer.

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