I always thought I was a visual artist, beginning at a very early age. I was born of creative parents: one artist and one musician (who was an engineer in real life). I began my freelance career as a hopeful illustrator and production artist after quitting college in 1974. In 1987 I published my first picture book, Pussycat Ate the Dumplings. Since then I have published projects as illustrator and/or author of novelty, activity and picture books, early readers, middle grade fiction and nonfiction, magazine articles, blogs, and a variety of educational materials. I design book covers and interiors, and have created book trailers for a few projects just for fun. You can visit one of those here and also see what else is on my channel.
In recent years, I’ve been hired to write a variety of nonfiction books for kids, a far cry from drawing cute little animals with dots for eyes! It’s been especially enjoyable work, because as a kid, I was super-bored by the books and classes offered to us. As a nature nerd outside of class, I probably missed out on pursuing a career in science because of the lack of inspiration/connection in school. Now I have the chance to write the books I would have loved. I can hopefully help kids get excited about things they’ve never considered before, maybe even help set them on a career path that they’ve never heard of or thought about.
So far, I haven’t turned down a job that sounded interesting no matter what the challenge, (Poop is Power comes to mind, one of my favorites) and I also work on a variety of projects that I hope to sell someday. I thrive on variety and love to learn about things and then turn what I learn into a book for kids. I also write Instructables and have won four contests so far. My partner and I self-published one book which you can find here, and are working on another one which you can read about here. I also like to grow plants, scream at the TV, gawk at nature, and play guitar.
I share my life with one very patient partner of 43 years, Jeep the dog, Bonita and Shinny the cats, and a variety of wild critters that inhabit our Funny Farm in western Oregon.