The Heroine’s Journey of Vanessa Rusci

selfieWhat is the best thing that I love about my work? My work ranges between art and communication, teaching and marketing, coaching, and talent scouting. I love this: in my work, there is never stasis, there is always research, creativity is needed, you travel a lot, you meet a lot of people.

What is my idea of happiness? My idea of happiness is to be free to move, to do, to create, to have good health and the tools to realize your projects and to eat every day, good travel companions and good friends.

What is my greatest fear? I am not very afraid, I am worried about nature and the planet, about pollution, about the stupidity of certain attitudes of the human who forgets he is a guest of planet earth and instead believes he is the master of it.

What is the trait that I most deplore in myself? I’ve worked a lot on myself, paths of various kinds, from psychology to religion, I’ve learned to love my flaws too, so there’s nothing regrettable about me.

Which living persons in my profession do i most admire? There are many people in my profession that I love: Giuliana Traverso, great Italian photographer; Nan Goldin, American photographer, and artist; Laurie Anderson, artist, and performer; Annie Leibovitz photographer.

What is my greatest extravagance? I can’t say, I feel very normal.

On what occasion would I lie? Lies, they can be good too. I love the novel, the story enriched with details that no one can ever verify.

What is the thing that I dislike the most in my work? Archiving, I hate spending hours cleaning up an archive, which will never be in order!

When and where was I the happiest, in my work? Surely, one of the most beautiful moments of my artistic work was in London in 2014 when I made with the artist Michelangelo Bonitatibus the work “Concedimi un altro divenire”. With him, I found a wonderful artistic understanding, which allowed me to realize a fantastic and ambitious project.

If I could, what would I change about myself? I have been working for many years on women’s issues, on self-esteem, both with photography and art. This has led to the birth of a project “About your body” inspired by the concepts of the “positive body” movement and the fight against stereotypes. This made me realize how wrong it is to criticize or offend yourself. I have personally followed many courses in personal growth. I can, therefore, declare that I would not change anything about myself, but I hope to continue to improve, my brain, my body, my heart.

What is my greatest achievement in work? I don’t know. I’d rather look at new goals to achieve than those already achieved.

Where would I most like to live? In the country, and also in NY, and also in London, and also in Paris… and why not in Rome 🙂

What is my most treasured possession? My books and my nephews.

What is my most marked characteristic? I’m tirelessly creative, very stubborn.

What is my most inspirational location, in my city? I consider myself a nomad because I’m always around. The place that inspires me most in London is Camden, in Rome are the Imperial Forums, in Milan the Sforza Castle, in Siena Piazza del Campo…

What is my favourite place to eat and drink, in my city? In Rome the restaurant from Checco in Trastevere, in my hometown Grosseto, in Tuscany, I love having breakfast at the Bar Ritual, lunch at Essenza, the vegan restaurant, and for bread, cakes, and pastries at the Cafe Corsini. In Italy, you can eat and drink very well in every region!

What books influenced my life and how? The precious mystery life of Daisaku Ikeda; Art and visual perception of Rudolf Arnheim; Psychomagia by Alejandro Jodorowsky;Multi-layered interview with Aldo Carotenuto and Da storia nasce storia by Ottavio Rosati. Each of these books has opened new paths for my artistic and life research.

You Only Die Once. What music would I listen on my last day? Not on the last day, every time I want to feel good: Lucky man a song from The Verve

Who is my hero or heroine in fiction? I love science fiction, and often my heroes save the world from destruction.

Who are my heroes and heroines in real life? Daisaku Ikeda.

Which movie would i recommend to see once in a lifetime? Big Fish, by Tim Burton.The forbidden fashion: Roberto Capucci and the future of high fashion by Ottavio Rosati.Psychomagia by Alejandro Jodorowsky.

What role plays art in my life and work? Art is my life, why I wake up, what makes me dream, is everything.

What do the words ‘You are the storyteller of your own life’ to me? We build our future with every thought, every word, every action, everything depends on ourselves.

Who is my greatest fan, sponsor, partner in crime? Oh, my God! There’s so many of them, they’re my friends, my colleagues, my family… But I must surely thank, Antonio Manta, one of the best fine art printers in Italy and perhaps in Europe, for his talent and for the support he has given to my work over the years ; Ottavio Rosati, one of the best-known European psychodramatists and director for the continuous advice to my work and for the great friendship that binds me to him, Luciana Santioli, psychodramatist, colleague and great friend, David Aquilino, Italian Architect, my great friend, who has always supported me in my journey in art and photography, and not least my great artist friend Michelangelo Bonitatibus. My dear cousin Federica Leoni and my dear artist friend Giorgia Masneri.

Which people or companies would I like to work with in 2020?  I’d love to work with:
IED ROME, a school I collaborated with years ago and which I deeply love.


NABA Milan, also a school of the highest level.
Moma in NY.
Pompidou Center, in Paris.
Cucinelli Italy.
Harrods London.
Macy’s Herald Square, NY.
The Photographers’ Gallery, London.
Hamiltonsm, London.

Which people in my profession who can make a real difference in my creative career would i love to meet in 2020?  Nan Goldin, American photographer, and artist; Laurie Anderson, artist, and performer; Annie Leibovitz photographer.

What project, in 2020, am I looking forward to work on? My project on trauma and post trauma. it’s a photographic project and a performance.

Where can you see me or my work in 2020? Due to the virus COVID 19 emergency every exhibitions are suspended. You can see my work on my website and social accounts. My works are often developed on social networks. ,

What do the words “Passion Never Retires” mean to me? For me photography and art are like breathing, I’ll stop the last moment of my life.

Which creative heroines should Peter invite to tell their story?  I know many women heroines: I appreciate above all the work of Anna Ferrara of Caserta, whose photographic research I love very much. but many others should be included…

How can you contact me?

Web site

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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