The Heroine’s Journey of Sarah Pannekoek

What is the best thing that I love about my work?

I love to create things in a playful way, I start with a small idea and then just see where it goes. I love when it happens organically. I enjoy my work most when I make things in a associative way, from finishing one drawing and directly starting a new one.

What is my idea of perfect happiness?

That is pretty hard to describe, I think that the unexpected plays a large part in it. Perfect happiness can be a small success, a new dream that arrives, a special moments with the people I love or a moment of realisation of how lucky I am.

What is my greatest fear?

Losing my sight, hearing or feeling in my hands. I would feel so bad if I wasn’t able to make art or music anymore, it is such a personal thing for me, it is irreplaceable. I rely on my senses too much, If I would lose them I would have to reinvent myself.

What is the trait that I most deplore in myself?

I love to play it safe, I am not that much of a risk-taker. I feel very comfortable when I am in control, but when you are an artist you have to make life changing choices constantly. This scares me sometimes and it holds me back. It would be nice if I could turn my worries off sometimes and just go on an adventure.

Which living persons in my profession do I most admire?

I really love the animations of Torill Kove, I love her style and storytelling. Other filmmakers I admire: Patrick Mchale, Michaël Dudok de Wit, the Coen brothers, David Cronenberg and Pedro Almodóvar. The comics of Jim Woodring, Cyril Pedrosa, José Domingo, Dave McKean and Sam Peeters are also magnificent, their visual styles are very inspiring and I love the imagination within their books.

What is my greatest extravagance?

My red hair

On what occasion would I lie?

I almost never lie, I find it very difficult to be untrue.

What is the thing that I dislike the most in my work?

When I am stuck and repeating myself, that bothers me a lot. I can be jealous of the creative solutions my colleagues can create. I find it hard to use camera’s and perspective creatively, this is something I want to improve in.

When and where was I the happiest, in my work?

I have really enjoyed the graduation ceremony of my animation Master, for the first time I saw my animation film on the big screen. This was a great experience and the start of much more.

If I could, what would I change about myself?

I would like to have more nerve, more a ‘fuck everything’ attitude towards the industry and changes in my business.

What is my greatest achievement in work?

My greatest achievement so far… I am proud of the portfolio I’ve created, the exhibitions I have done and the people I have met. I think I still can achieve much more, this is just the beginning!

Where would I most like to live?

I just moved back to the city I have studied, Groningen, and I absolutely love this city. So for now, this is perfect. If I would move to another country, I would like to live in Iceland.

What is my most treasured possession?

I have a box full of memories, this box is dear to me. I love to think about things of the past and these items help me remember.

What is my most marked characteristic?

Grounded and kind

What is my most inspirational location, in my city?

I really like the ‘Noorderplantsoen’ a beautiful small park that’s always alive. In summer all the students go there to picknick, play, walk and there are dogs everywhere.

What is my favourite place to eat and drink, in my city?

I really like the vegetarian food from ‘Bla Bla’ and the ‘Concerthuis’ is always a good place for a drink.

What books influenced my life and how?

‘Pippi Longstocking’ was my childhood hero, her view on the world stayed with me while growing up. I loved ‘Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage’, True Gritt, To Kill A Mockingbird, ‘Monsieur Ibrahim and the Flowers of the Koran’ and Perfume, these stories touched me and stimulate my imagination. I have a feeling these books have a heavy tone but there is some light in the dark. I can relate to this way of thinking .

Who are my favorite writers?

Haruki Murakami, Astrid Lindgren and Annie M.G. Schmidt

You Only Die Once. What music would I listen on my last day?

Nick Cave, Otis Redding, Joan Armatrading

Who is my hero or heroine in fiction?

Pippi Longstocking, Olive from ‘Little Miss Sunshine’, Thelma & Louise

Who are my heroes and heroines in real life?

Difficult, I don’t really see a celebrity as my hero’s, because it feels so far away. I do have heroes in my daily life. I really admire it when people are true to themselves, when they show both their good and bad sides. That’s why my sister and best friends are heroines to me.

Which movie would i recommend to see once in a lifetime?

‘Old Boy’ the South- Korean version, ‘Norwegian Wood’, ‘Where The Wild Things Are’, ‘La Haine’, ‘Spirited Away’, ‘Her’ and so much more.

What role plays art in my life and work?

Art history is amazing, there is so much beauty out there, I get inspired by artist from the past all the time. I especially love primitive art, romanticism, realism, expressionism, art nouveau and surrealism. I use aspects from the past that trigger my creativity and use them to make something new.

Who is my greatest fan, sponsor, partner in crime?

I think my friend Alina Milkina is my greatest fan, she is always interested in the things I make. She makes beautiful work herself and I would love to work with her in the near future.

Whom would I like to work with in 2020?

I would love to work with fellow artists Ender Yıldız, Alina Milkina and Anna Guglielmi Farris this year. I think it will be great to work for some cool fashion brands, cultural events or a publisher.

Which people in my profession would i love to meet in 2020?

I don’t have a list of people I would love to meet, but I am always in for meeting new people and looking around at new companies.

What project, in 2020, am I looking forward to work on?

I just got a new job, where I am creating content for an educational company. This is pretty exciting and I am looking forward to the results. Besides that I am going to work on a leader for a festival, this will be a great project for sure.

Where can you see me or my work in 2020?

My graduation film will go to festival this year. I have some announcements already: it will be in Moscow (27th of January), in Portugal (4th of April) and in Stuttgard (5-10th of may). I have an art exhibition in the Dutch city Hoogeveen in February.

What do the words “Passion Never Retires” mean to me?

If creating things has become part of who you are, you can never quit. Sure, you can have a break, but the ideas will come eventually and it will start all over again.

Which creative heroines should Peter invite to tell their story? 

Alina Milkina, Maud van Lohuizen, Janneke Hoek, Hannah van der Weide, Jasmijn ter Stege, Saskia van der Post, Marcella Stam, Dagmar Stap, Emma Postema, Steph Ro Cavina

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.


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    You are a creative leader or creative professional  who is interested in developing yourself, your business, and your story.

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    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.

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    You want to learn more about how to resource yourself, learn about blind spots, and get feedback.

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    You are curious and want to engage in online learning.

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    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).


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.

individual coaching for leaders


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 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.

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