About Me

First, here's a picture of what I really look like.Yup, that's me, big, strawberry blonde and staring into space.

One of my few selfportraits that I actually like!

Based on my profile picture you might have thought I was a blackhaired cutie girl dressed in pink, huh?
Well, you shouldn't always believe profile pictures! ;-)

My name is Caatje, well actually it's Carin, well actually actually it's Catharina. Let me explain.
My birthcertificate says Catharina, but that's because in those days we all got these fancy names on our birth certificates instead of what we were actually called. In everyday life I have always been called Carin, never ever Catharina. I would have liked that though, it sounds so wonderfully regal. But alas, no fancy names for me. Over time close family and friends have called me by my nickname, which is Caatje. Caatje is the Dutch equivalent of Katie.

At some point I joined the internet community and when I became part of this reading group there was already another Carin there, so to set us two apart I started using my nickname Caatje. Since then it kindof stuck, so I've always used it online and now I'm so used to it, it seems silly to change it back to Carin, even thoug in everyday life I am most often still called that.

This is the house I was born in.

I was born in 1970 in the east of the Netherlands in the final days of my fathers farm. It was a beautiful place to grow up as a little child and I still have fond memories of that region and try to go back there every now and then just to taste the atmosphere. Since then we moved to other places and in 2004 I took the big leap and left my then current job (as a librarian at a school for visual arts) to become an archivist on a small island north of the Netherlands, known as Vlieland.

One of my big dreams always was to live near the sea, so when this opportunity presented itself I could not not do it, if you know what I mean. Because where does one ever find more sea than on an island? It was scary, it was difficult and it was a huge change of life. But I have never looked back. Well okay, I've looked back a lot, but never in regret. I love living in this beautiful place where all I have to do is walk to the end of my street to be surrounded by beautiful landscape. The nature here is beautiful and at night it gets so dark you can actually see so many stars that it takes your breath away.

Beautiful Vlieland, see the lighthouse peek out there?

I have always been fond of drawing and painting. As a child I even tried to make doll's clothes before I could sew by putting them together with tape (I advise strongly against this by the way, haha). My need to make stuff has just become stronger over the years and I must say that moving to this beautiful place has made this longing even stronger. There's more space for it somehow. 

I have thought about doing all this professionally but have decided it's not for me. Doing artsy stuff is doing what I love, it's not supposed to be work. I'm not looking to get paid for it and I'm not looking to get famous with it. I'm looking to enjoy it. And maybe sometimes I can make somebody happy with what I've made. That's all. I want to explore materials and shapes and images. I love colors. I have a wide variety of loves in the art field. I write, I paint, I draw, I make books, I do photography, I do collage, I do mixed media. I could never choose or specialize myself into one field. Variety is the spice of my artsy life! And really, artsy stuff is what gives my entire life that spice!

27 kilometers of beach, what more do you really need?

Around 2002/2003 I came into contact with art journaling and it was a huge eye opener for me. To put all the things you love to do into one book, what a revelation! Since then working in books or making books has been my favorite format. But I will take out a canvas every now and then or just work on loose pieces of paper to keep the juices flowing.

I started this blog in May of 2010, after wanting to do it for years and not following through on it. I'm so glad I did finally start it up and kept it up. The blog community gives an extra motivation to keep going and I love exchanging ideas and works of art. It's amazing what all kinds of people all over the world are up to and it definitely enriches my life to be a part of the blogosphere.

"Sometimes the whole worlds is still not enough"

Finally a little word about my profile picture. As I've said above, it's not me. But it means a lot to me, because to me it marks a point in time when I started to take my artistic practice seriously. Even though I don't want to turn this artsy stuff into work I do want to keep a steady practice of it. Why? Because it's good for my soul! And right after I decided that I made this image. It just marks a point in time for me around 2008 that was important to me, that's why I use it as my profile picture. That's all. 

I really hope you enjoy my blog. If you want, leave a comment sometimes. I love getting feedback. If you like it a lot maybe you want to become a follower even. If you have questions feel free to mail me at c.m.j.winkelman[at]home[dot]nl. And above all: thank you so much for visiting!