Raimke Groothuizen is an 29 year old animation film maker from Breda, Holland. She lives together with her fiance, a parrot, a lizard and two cats. As a part time animation teacher and entrepreneur, she lives a busy but fulfilling life, combining her passion for creating stories with thinking outside of the box.
After graduating at the art academy in Breda, her graduation project (a picture book and short animation) called ‘The Little Crow with the Naked Bottom’ was well received internationally.
Carrie: Welcome to Artist Strong Raimke, can you describe to readers what you do?
I’m an animation film maker. I help companies with translating their ‘difficult’ messages (think: mission, vision, new products, work method, etc.) into understandable animated shorts. I also facilitate animation workshops in schools and businesses to encourage creative thinking.
Carrie: How did you first discover your interest in animation?
Looking back it seems obvious that I am an animator now. I spent my childhood making up lots of stories and being fascinated by cartoons on tv. Back then I already liked being in charge and I didn’t like depending on others. My parents really encouraged us to use our imagination while solving problems. So in a way it work out perfectly. While never considering a career in animation, it just turned out to be a perfect match at the academy.
Carrie: Can you describe your creative process to readers?
Listening to my clients. I want to understand their story. At the same time I try to make a visual translation (in my head) that is understandable for the target group. I ask my clients a lot of questions because I want my work to fit my client. I don’t have a stock of images, but really create something new based on my clients wishes and image.
Carrie: Where do you get ideas for content?
Everywhere! I liked to be inspired by other creative makers. Animators are really respectful towards each other because no one does exactly the same as another. There is not as much competition as in other creative areas. I can also get inspired by the world around me. Just taking a different perspective on the world around me is really inspiring. Watching young children play is great: they have a pure, discovering view of the world around them.
Carrie: How do your interests outside of art fuel your artwork?
I love going to the cinema. I’m there at least twice a week. Unconsciously I’ll let myself be influenced by life-action cinematic techniques. I love stories whether in books or films. I find myself being influenced by people in the streets or unusual conversations that I pick up.
Carrie: How does collaboration help and/or hinder your art?
As a freelance animator I need others. Sometimes I need them to make a combination with audio visual. Othertimes, I need help from voice-overs or sound designers. The fact that I can pick my own colleagues is a privilege.
Carrie: What has been one hurdle you’ve overcome as a creative and how did you navigate that problem?
Making myself tinier than I needed to. I found it hard to take myself seriously as an freelance animator. My portfolio was rather small when I started. I wondered if the world was waiting for my work?! By not taking myself seriously I attracted clients that didn’t really take me seriously. I overcame this issue over time. As my portfolio grew I became less anxious. I enjoy the journey as an entrepreneur more as an adventure itself.
Carrie: How do you know when a creation is finished?
It’s never really finished. I think a good critical artist can always find some improvement to his or her work. For me the art is to be okay with my work for 95 percent. The other 5 perfectionistic percent, I have to let go.
Carrie: What is one creative resource you can’t live without?
Friends to brainstorm with are my best creative resource. I love making up crazy stories with my friends. Just looking at the world and thinking: what if…happened? Like: what if cactuses could talk, what would they tell us? What if all of a sudden a giant waffle walked into a restaurant, what would he order? Those kind of silly stories make my life way more fun.
Carrie: Who/what inspires you?
I get inspired by people that have a lot of passion for what they do, but still can enjoy life. People who wonder about all the mysteries the world has to offer. I love animation films (obviously!) because they make you get in touch with your inner child. I love grown up people that just don’t give a sh*t about what others think of them (in a respectful way). I love the world around me.
Carrie: How do you define Creativity?
Creativity is translating fantasy into real life. It’s about finding solutions for problems you have to deal with. Everybody is able to be creative in their own way.
BE COURAGEOUSLY CREATIVE: Have you ever made yourself and your creative dreams small? When did you realize that owning and celebrating your creativity was necessary for your growth? I want to know, let’s talk in the comments below.
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