The Heroine’s Journey of Kristine Ortmeier

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

I work as an illustrator so I kind of tell the story with pictures. What I love most about it, is that the only limitation you have is your phantasy. In real life, there are always boundaries and limitations and in my work, I can be free in my imagination. There is always a vibe of everything is possible to it, which is very liberating.

What is my idea of happiness?

To me true happiness is to be free of any needs. When I work I totally loose myself in it, I am in a total flow. That means that I am in the moment and forget to eat, drink, think or anything. I really love the simple things the most, so after a long hike or hard work in the garden, having work done and eating a good meal, cooked with love, that is happiness, too.

What is my greatest fear?

My greatest fear is that life is over until I have finished, what I would like to finish. I always had the dream to travel the world and own a tiny house. Especially now, during corona, that fear is quiet obvious for me. There are so many places I´d love to visit and do not know when that will be possible again.

What is the trait that I most deplore in myself?

I hate being shy and I hate being a perfectionist sometimes.

Which living persons in my profession do i most admire?

I really love the work of Oliver Jeffers and Jon Klassen. Both of them have an unique style that really seems to come effortlessly. I love them not only for their work, but also for being open and friendly, caring persons. To me, their personality shines through their work, which is a quiet rare quality.

What is my greatest extravagance?

I am not a very extravagant person but I have the dream to own a customized car as a bed, most likely an old Volvo. A dream that will perhaps come true one day.

On what occasion would I lie?

Personally, I can better deal with someone telling me the truth, even if it is hard. And so I do myself. If I lie, I do it not to hurt somebody. Just tiny little lies.

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

I hate it when I have an idea and do not get it done to paint it as I imagined it. I also dislike being under pressure or having a strict timeline. Under these circumstances, my work will not meet my personal standards and in the end will leave me unhappy.

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

I would say that I am the happiest with every new piece I am proud of. Working is constant learning, so with every bit you get better. I love the idea of never reaching a sort of final level. Development and change keep me going.

If I could, what would I change about myself?

As I mentioned above, I hate my shyness. If I could, I would definitely change that. But  it is getting better.

What is my greatest achievement in work?

I think my greatest achievement is that I keep going. I am very bullheaded sometimes, which is a quality and sometimes not. I have this dream to write and illustrate a picture book since I was pregnant with my daughter and I think I will not rest, until I have done this.

Where would I most like to live?

I am a huge fan of the Netherlands and would like to have a house boat. I also love Mexiko and Island. Perhaps, in the future, I will live there part time or for extended holidays. I need my base, my hometown to come back to. So I think, I would rather opt for a tiny house here and go on holiday somewhere else.

What is my most treasured possession?

I don´t like hanging my soul to material things too much, but in my garden I have and old frame house that was rebuilt several times. It once belonged to my great grandmother, then my grandfather, then my dad and now me. It has a story and it has great value to me.

What is my most marked characteristic?

Some would call it naivete, but to me it is a very positive characteristic. I think that even I am not religious at all, there is a power guiding us. There is a saying your vibe attracts your tribe and I found that this is very true. If you go your way, the way that feels right for you, magical, positive things will happen. I truly belief in openness and curiosity.

What is my most inspirational location, in my city?

My garden! It looks different every season and provides my with delicious foods and flowers. A great place to recharge my batteries.

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

I like to go out for dinner, too. But I also love to cook myself and develop new recipies.

What books influenced my life and how?

One of my favorite childhood books was Alice in wonderland. A book that triggers your imagination and is full of phantasy. The last book that influenced me was everything that remains by the minimalist and the biography of Jim Henson. In both books I loved the dedication to a certain theme.

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

I am a huge fan of Iggy Pop, so I would opt for the passenger.

Who is my hero or heroine in fiction?

My heroine in fiction is definitely Tank Girl, because she is a strong female figure with a strong will and powerful attitude.

Who are my heroes and heroines in real life?

In real life, everyone who is passionate about something and is clear about his or her way is a hero to me. There are so many activists and people with great ideas out there, too many to name all of them.

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

The secret of Kells really got me. If you are interested in stories for children, that are also of worth for adults, you have to see it. It has everything it needs, great music, pictures and story.

What role play stories in my life and work?

Stories can touch you soul and make you feel like you are in an entire different world. Stories play a very important role in my life and work. I am convinced, that when children are confronted with the right stories, these stories have the power to make them better humans.

What do the words ‘You are the storyteller of your own life’ to me?

To me that means that you have to be clear about the power you have yourself to change your own life. Every decision you make has an impact. You can create your future by your actions.

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

I can’t say who is the biggest one, but I know that there are many among the way who help me on my way, even with small actions.

Which people or companies would I like to work with in 2021?

I would really love to work with the german publisher Magellan Verlag for my childrens books.I love them for their interest in great storytelling and sustainability. I would also love to create gaming cards for the German company Ravensburger.

Which people in my profession who can make a real difference in my creative career would i love to meet in 2021?

As mentioned earlier, I would love to meet the illustrators Jon Klassen and Oliver Jeffers. I think they would have a lot to say beyond their work.

What project, in 2021, am I looking forward to work on?

I would like to get the picture book Carlos findet sich selbst published and get the other picturebook, Millas Chaostage, done.

Where can you see me or my work in 2021?

You can find my work on Instagram ( or on my homepage:

If I am lucky, you might find me in bookshops!

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

Everything! It  could me my life motto. You can’t do anything against it, passion comes over you like the flue. I think I will work until I die and nothing will stop me from doing so.

Which creative heroines should Peter invite to tell their story?

Jon Klassen, Oliver Jeffers, Charlotte Gastault, Kat Menschik, Thorsten Hasenkamm

How can you contact me?

By mail:

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