I’m Naomi Blindeman and I’ve been making websites for more than ten years. Every day that I work on websites and web apps I learn something new and when, one day, I came across Stefan Judis’s Today I Learned blog, I thought, What a fabulous idea! And I immediately started my own blog, where I plan to catalog every new and exciting thing that I learn. Having at my fingertips a growing personal archive of information that I find useful—info to use frequently or not—is money in the bank.
I started out with HTML and CSS. My tools were Notepad and Filezilla. What I love about making websites, and about coding, is that you don’t really need much of anything to create something. What matters most is imagination and a willingness to keep trying something until it works. You can create something out of nothing, like magic. It’s very much like writing.
I was trained in creative writing and teaching creative writing. I earned my BA in that field, and storytelling always impacts how I design and build websites. My creative writing background brought projects my way that I might not otherwise have gotten to work on.
Following HTML and CSS, I learned Flash, using first AS2 and later AS3 as needed, because I wanted to make animations that combined poetry with visuals. When you see Blindschelders & Raadsman mentioned here, it’s because my collaboration with Inge Raadschelders has been one of the most creative, long-lasting, and fun that I’ve ever had professionally. Together Inge and I created poetic animations which were exhibited in art museums, at art fairs and in theatres, and at the Dutch Nacht van de Poëzie, which is the most important annual poetry event in the Netherlands. Our most rewarding collaboration is the unique web application that we developed for teaching Dutch language poetry to people with a mental disability. Our method works equally well with children and adults, and anyone can go through the steps of the app and create a poem.
I was born and raised in the Netherlands, but during the last few years I’ve been travelling between Oregon, New York, and Amsterdam. I love all three of these places, and if asked to choose a favorite right now I would not be able to. At forty-five years old, I find that the world for me has expanded, and in very welcome ways. Being able to work anywhere is a privilege of our time, and I feel lucky to have chosen the profession that I have. I love what I do.
July 30, 2019, New York