What is the best thing that I love about my work? I love that I can visualise complex feelings and ideas into an image, that’s why I describe myself almost like a visual poet. I also use my work to do research on topics that I’d like to know more about or to understand it a bit more. Another thing that I love about being an illustrator/animator is that I can make the impossible possible. I love using metaphors and visual language to show my thoughts, emotions and opinions. Whenever I do a project it’s also fun to see how other people interpret it, especially when it’s different from what I originally wanted. That way the work starts living its own life.
What is my idea of perfect happiness? Hanging out with good people, laughing and getting inspired. Also when I finally have a break-through when I’m working on a project and know exactly what to do next, it motivates me the most.
What is my greatest fear? Losing my ability to think clearly or losing my hands. I wouldn’t be able to draw or create anymore and that’s what I love doing the most.
What is the trait that I most deplore in myself? I overthink a lot of things and can get insecure about my work, which sometimes causes meto procrastinate. It helps to just share my work without thinking about it, receiving positive feedback also helps with my insecurity.
Which living persons in my profession do I most admire? There are so many! On the top of my head: Hannah Jacobs, Manddy Wyckens, Chloe Bristol, Jordan Bruner, Rafael Mayani, Marianna Tomaselli, Rebecca Mock and Deborah Lee. All of them are amazing illustrators and animators who inspire me in different ways, but mostly their use of colour and textures.
What is my greatest extravagance? Whenever I get an idea for something I always think in the bigger picture, sometimes so big it’s not even necessary or not realistic. It’s important to dream!
On what occasion would I lie? I’m a terrible liar; I can feel bad about it for days, so that’s why I usually don’t lie. In some occasions you have to tell a little white lie, maybe to avoid hurting someone’s feelings or to protect yourself. In that case I think it’s okay.
What is the thing that I dislike the most in my work? Doing administration and accounting isn’t that great. Working in this industry you need to do a lot of boring things before you can start creating.
When and where was I the happiest, in my work? When I finished my first short film ‘Second Floor’ during my Master of Animation and then to see that film being selected to several festivals. I think I’m most happy when people tell me that they love my work or understood it. Thank you to all people who came up to me to talk about animation after a screening; it’s one of my favourite things.
If I could, what would I change about myself? Right now I really like who I am. I’m trying to be less critical about my own work and to be kinder to myself. Give yourself a break from time to time! The world isn’t that bad after all.
What is my greatest achievement in work? Probably the same answer as when I was the happiest in my work. My greatest achievement for now is my short film. I worked so hard on it and I’m still very proud of it till this day, even though my skills have improved. I’m also really proud of pursuing this career as a whole, I’ve wanted to be an artist ever since I was a kid but thought it wasn’t realistic, yet here we are! Recently I have also started a small film event in the city of Breda. We only had one edition so far, but I would like to develop it further and hopefully do more events this year.
Where would I most like to live? I like living in The Netherlands, but I do have dreams to live in Los Angeles for a while. Not too long because I like small towns. I think I could also easily live somewhere in Norway, Ireland or a tiny village in Germany. My dream is to travel around and work from all different kinds of places.
What is my most treasured possession? The journal that I kept from when I was 12 and still write in. It’s full of memories, receipts, pictures and flyers. I love looking through it. It’s my most treasured possession because it’s irreplaceable.
What is my most marked characteristic? This is very difficult to answer about yourself. I think my most marked characteristic is that I’m a hard worker and very disciplined to work on projects that I’m passionate about.
What is my most inspirational location, in my city? Right now it’s Electron Breda, where I have my workplace. It inspires me when I have people around me that are also working in the creative field. In my hometown Terneuzen, where I am from but don’t live anymore, I like to go on long walks in nature and alongside the water. Most of my ideas come to me during one of those walks.
What is my favourite place to eat and drink, in my city? Lunchroom Sunshine, they have a lot of dishes and drinks from all over the world and its decor is so colourful!
What books influenced my life and how? Everyone’s a Aliebn When Ur a Aliebn Too by Jomny Sun. It’s a recently published book, about a lonely alien observing the earth. It’s very unique storytelling using illustration, with bad spelling and many different layers to the story. It’s one of those books that’s innocent, relatable and made me laugh and cry at different times.
Who are my favorite writers? Roald Dahl. My parents got me most of his children’s books when I was young and I loved the strange characters and bizarre situations. Not to mention Quentin Blake’s illustrations! Maybe that was the start of my love for drawing…
You only die once. What music would I listen on my last day? Elbow and Tom Rosenthal. Or you know, I could spend my last day on earth dancing to Britney Spears, Lady Gaga or MARINA.
Who is my hero or heroine in fiction? Matilda. She’s badass and knows how to stand up for herself.
Who are my heroes and heroines in real life? My grandfather. He’s old but still cool and extremely funny.
Which movie would I recommend to see once in a lifetime? The Red Turtle by Michael Dudok de Wit. And not a movie but a series: The Good Place on Netflix
What role plays art in my life and work? Art is my life and my work. A lot of things inspire me and I try to connect everything I do to a new project or concept for an art piece.
Who is my greatest fan, sponsor, partner in crime? The friends I made at the art academy! Not only do we support each other in our work, there is also a great understanding of each others feelings because we went through the same thing and are all very open minded.
Whom would I like to work with in 2020? I’d like to work together with musicians and create an animated music video or projections during a concert. Or I would like to work with more writers and illustrate another book. I’m open for collaboration! Hit me up if you are reading this and want to work together!
What project, in 2020, am I looking forward to work on? I’m not sure what 2020 will bring. I’m looking forward to focus more on my own personal work. I’d like to work on apparel and accessories for my Etsy shop, publish a zine and start working on a second film! Lots and lots of ideas, but usually I just go with the flow and see where inspiration takes me.
Where can you see me or my work in 2020? You can hopefully see me during more editions of my event ‘Het Filmlokaal’ in Breda. I will exhibit my work in a coffee place this May and my film will be screened at ShortCutz in Amsterdam (date TBA), shortly after it will be published online!
What do the words ‘Passion never retires’ mean to me? My passion for art and design will never stop. It started as a hobby and now it’s my work, but I still love it and can’t see myself doing anything else or retiring. I’m very lucky and privileged that I can draw for a living.
Which creative heroines should Peter invite to tell their story?
Liek van Egmond (graphic designer)
Arjanne van Manen (cartoonist)
Romee van der Schoot (animator)
Louise van Straten (illustrator)
How can you contact me?
Here follows a message of Peter de Kuster, founder of The Heroine’s Journey
Are you a creative leader or creative professional looking to develop your business skills and storytelling?
Amidst today’s uncertainty, it is more important than ever to reconnect with yourself and others, develop your creative business, and build your story. Dive deep into your unique business style and areas for growth with the coaching of Peter de Kuster.
IS THE HEROINE’S JOURNEY COACHING FOR YOU?
You are a creative leader or creative professional who is interested in developing yourself, your business, and your story.
You are aware that there are no quick fixes. Learning is a journey that works when you are fully committed to it. Coaching can bring awareness and help you navigate, but in the end it’s you who is in charge of your growth.
You want to learn more about how to resource yourself, learn about blind spots, and get feedback.
You are curious and want to engage in online learning.
You are motivated to work in-between sessions on yourself (e.g. working on homework assignments that will help you develop new storytelling, skills, and behaviors).
WHAT’S YOUR COACHING QUESTION?
The Heroine’s Journey Coaching is all about your development. To make the most out of your sessions, we ask you to prepare topics to work on with Peter. These topics can serve as a starting point for further in-depth exploration with Peter.
These coaching topics typically resonate with the creative leaders Peter works with:
How can i tell the most powerful story possible about myself and my creative business?
How can I handle self promotion and marketing of my creative business better?
How do can I stay authentic and with focus when having difficult conversations with potential clients?
What are my creative values and how do I align these with my business values?
How can I manage my time and energy better?
How can I radiate confidence to my clients while feeling anxious inside?
How can I steer myself towards creative excellence without becoming rigid?
About Peter de Kuster
Peter de Kuster is the founder of The Heroine’s Journey & Hero’s Journey project, a storytelling firm which helps creative professionals to create careers and lives based on whatever story is most integral to their lives and careers (values, traits, skills and experiences). Peter’s approach combines in-depth storytelling and marketing expertise, and for over 20 years clients have found it effective with a wide range of creative business issues.
Peter is writer of the series The Heroine’s Journey and Hero’s Journey books, he has an MBA in Marketing, MBA in Financial Economics and graduated at university in Sociology and Communication Sciences.
The Heroine’s Journey Coaching online sessions last 50 minutes and the fee is Euro 189 excluding VAT per session. The Heroine’s Journey Coaching is suitable for people at any stage in their career.
Who can sign up for The Heroine’s Journey online coaching?
Creative leaders and creative professionals who wish to improve their business story and develop their business skills and mindset.
Should I choose 1:1 coaching?
Our The Heroine’s Journey experiences in world cities allow you to learn not only from the coach but also from your peers. For the small group coaching (1 – 4 people), we have selected important, relevant topics that we find regularly come up for creative professional: purpose, storytelling, creative confidence, self promotion, time & money and resilience.
If you would prefer to work alone or on a different topic, individual coaching is a better fit for you.
What language do we speak in the coaching sessions?
Can I buy coaching for my organization?
Yes, you can! We support many organizations around the world with their coaching needs. Please contact us for more information.
Can I bring my own topics?
Yes, for individual coaching you get to choose your own topic.
Are coaching sessions confidential?
Yes. Peter will not share anything that is discussed in the coaching sessions.
Where will the coaching sessions take place?
Sessions will take place online (as per the times we live in) via an online tool like Zoom or Skype. Peter will let you know.
How do I sign up?
Send Peter a mail to firstname.lastname@example.org to start booking your coaching sessions.
How do I pay?
After you send the mail, you will receive an email with a link to pay.
How do I book and reschedule sessions?
Once we’ve received your payment, Peter will contact you and book your coaching sessions. He will also support you with rescheduling sessions if needed.
What is your cancellation policy?
Individual coaching sessions can be postponed up to one week before the session.