Illustrator Hall of Fame
Every month, Literati subscribers receive original artwork created exclusively for our themed curations by world-renowned illustrators. Check out past illustrators below.
Let's Be Explorers — 2022
Hanako Clulow studied psychology before her passion for art re-emerged and led her to pursue a life as an illustrator. She started her art career at London markets, selling prints, t-shirts, and cards before signing with illustration agency Pickled Ink. After becoming a mother of two children in Japan, she and her family moved to Auckland, New Zealand, where she now works from home. Her clients include Caterpillar Books, Frances Lincoln Children’s Books, and Oxford University Press. Hanako enjoys drawing simple and bold character designs that appeal to children. Her projects have ranged from board books to illustrated non-fiction books, and even children’s clothing.
To learn more about Hanako, visit pickledink.com/hanako-clulow.
Dream it, Make it! — 2022
Martin Stanev is an illustrator and author working in children’s publishing. His debut picture book, The Planet in a Pickle Jar, was named one of the best children’s books of 2021 by The Guardian. Martin’s work draws inspiration from the magic of small everyday moments, the natural world, childhood nostalgia, and Eastern European imagery and design. When he’s not making art, he loves to grow his own food, bake, and cook. Originally from Bulgaria, he now lives just south of the Lake District, UK, where the landscape brings back memories of home. To learn more about Martin, visit martinstanev.com.
Natalia Rojas Castro
The Year's Bookends — 2021
Natalia Rojas Castro is an illustrator based in Bogotá, Colombia. She’s highly inspired by her surroundings, from the streets and people of Bogotá to the natural colors of Latin America. Natalia works in digital format, using textures to give her images an organic touch, and has loved using animation to bring her illustrations to life with subtle but powerful movements. When Natalia is not drawing, she enjoys riding her bike and making rugs with her designs for fun. To learn more about Natalia's work, follow her on Instagram: @losnaked.
Snowday Stories — 2021
Shelley Couvillion is an author-illustrator who grew up in sunny California, but now lives in the picturesque, rainy town of Columbia, Tennessee. Her favorite tools include watercolor, gouache, colored pencils, and pastels. Outside of art, her favorite things include pumpkin spiced coffee, stepping on crunchy leaves, and snuggling up with her kiddo. To explore more of Shelley’s art, find her on Instagram @Shelley_illustration or on her website at ShelleyCouvillion.com.
One Golden Autumn — 2021
Madeline Kloepper is a Canadian artist who enjoys illustrating children’s books with a strong connection to the natural world and a sense of nostalgia. In her work, she loves combining gouache painting with colored pencil and photoshop. When she is not out admiring the mountains and forests around her, you can find her creating art in her studio, making pottery, or sipping coffee. Madeline lives happily in a little old house with her partner, Ben, and sweet pup, Heidi. To learn more about Madeline, follow her on Instagram @madelinekloepper.
Thankful Hearts — 2021
Michelle Lee is an illustrator-author who has been drawing and creating since she could hold a pencil. As a former K-8 science teacher with a background in printmaking and biology, Michelle loves to wander in the areas where art, science, and education intersect. Picture books happen to be the perfect vehicle for this ongoing exploration! Michelle draws inspiration from nature in all its forms, her childhood memories, classic adventure stories, folklore, and the kids in her life. She lives in Los Angeles with her husband Charlie. You can find more of Michelle’s work at mklillustration.com.
The Secret Archives — 2021
Marina Muun is a freelance illustrator based in Bulgaria, where she lives and creates with her two cats, Peanut and Mochi. She works with digital tools to bring life and color to all kinds of themes. In her images, she tries to capture the subtle atmospheric magic found in daily life and nature—the same magic present in the fairy tales which fascinated her as a child and developed her love for reading very early on.
The Great Gallery — 2021
Riza Cruz is a Filipino American illustrator, graphic designer, and product designer based in the Bay Area and Los Angeles, CA. Through paper, she loves creating fun and colorful illustrations. Her paper crafts and illustrations are inspired by both real things in life and fun made-up things. You can find her work on Instagram @tinypaperlab or at her website rizacruz.com.
Steffi Lynn Tsai
The Page Less Traveled — 2021
Steffi Lynn Tsai was born in Austin, Texas and is an illustrator, muralist, and hand letterer. Her work is filled with quirkiness, color, and character. She takes commonplace scenes or moments and makes them playful, exciting, and enticing by combining her love for typography and her environment. Steffi’s work is inspired by everyday things, reactions and feelings, and simple imagery from her imagination or nature.
To learn more about Steffi, follow her on Instagram: @haveanicedayy_
Bon Voyage — 2021
Sarah Demonteverde is a Filipino illustrator who lives in Los Angeles, CA. She is the illustrator of many books for young readers, and her most recent picture book collaboration, You’re More Than A Sprout by Jill Roman Lord, is a crowd favorite. Passionate about culture and her family, and inspired by nature, she works with both traditional and digital tools to create colorful illustrations that reflect the vibrancy of life and the world around her. You can spot her use of shapes and different textures, as well as her love for plants of all sorts, flowing across much of the artwork she creates. To learn more about Sarah, follow her on Instagram: @ilandtuitles.
The Last of Summer — 2021
Simona Ciraolo is an award-winning author and illustrator. She grew up in Sardinia, among vineyards and olive groves. After obtaining a degree in animation, she moved to the UK and made her home in London. There, she worked in advertising, children’s television, and feature films, before beginning her career in picture books. Her books have been translated into many languages and read around the world. To learn more about Simona, visit www.simonaciraolo.com.
Live Your Legend — 2021
Celia Krampien is a Canadian author and illustrator of books for children. She grew up in a small town (population 400) in rural Southern Ontario. She spent her childhood reading, observing local wildlife, and climbing trees (and sometimes falling out of them). Today, she lives in the Niagara Region and still spends her time reading and observing the local wildlife, but now prefers to enjoy trees with both feet on the ground. To learn more about Celia, follow her on Instagram @celiakrampien.
To The Moon and Back — 2021
Jaime Kim is a Korean illustrator who lives in Charlotte, NC. She is the illustrator of many books for young readers, and her debut illustrated picture book, Take Heart, My Child, was a #1 New York Times bestseller. She works with gouache, acrylic, watercolors, and digital tools to create nostalgic and dreamlike illustrations, inspired by childhood memories of her family, as well as movies, art, and the outside world. Her favorite things are the sun, the moon, the sky, and stars – which is why they always creep into her artwork. To learn more about Jaime, visit jaimekim.com.
Investigation Station — 2021
Oliver Averill is an illustrator based in the West Midlands of the United Kingdom, inspired by history and most things old fashioned. He graduated from Falmouth University with a degree in illustration and enjoys creating his imagery through textures and mark making, which help create atmosphere in his work. Oliver loves to work on children's picture books, especially those with historical content.
Hidden World — 2021
Anastasia Ryzhkova is an illustrator from Russia. She loves to create illustrations with emotions, color, and fairytale worlds, and to show ordinary things from a different perspective. In addition to working in a digital medium, she enjoys drawing with color pencil and oil pastel and uses elements of monotype in her artwork. She also likes working with ceramics, especially sculpting funny little creatures from her imagination. To learn more about Anastasia, follow her on Instagram @mindaniels.
May YA — 2021
Denis Istomin is a 2D digital artist that currently resides in Tambov, Russia. From childhood, he loved illustration and avidly pursued the arts in school. Inspired by Makoto Shinkai’s work, he began painting atmospheric backgrounds and intricate environments that evoke nostalgia and magic. His dream is to continue making work that inspires and connects people with their emotions.
Kindness is the Cure — 2021
Corey R. Tabor is the author and illustrator of several books for children, including Mel Fell, Snail Crossing, and the Theodor Seuss Geisel Award–winning Fox the Tiger. Corey lives in Tacoma, Washington with his wife and son and spends his time making pictures and stories.
Jennifer M Potter
This Kaleidoscope World — 2021
Jennifer M Potter is an illustrator who loves bringing stories to life through imagery. She studied video and sequential arts at Savannah College of Art Design, and brings a love of cinematography to her illustrations. She has illustrated for the Washington Post and the Star Tribune, but her true passion is picture book illustration. Her book, Claude: The True Story of a White Alligator, was named one of the best books of 2020 by Kirkus Reviews. She lives in Baltimore with her husband and chiweenie, Frisket.
The Sword in the Story — 2021
Amanda lives in the UK and was born and bred in London. She has always loved to draw and has been doing so ever since she can remember. At the age of 14 she moved to Ghana and studied art at school and later returned to the UK to study graphic design.
Her artistic path deviated slightly when she studied Classics at University; and then later started working in finance. But over the years, in a bid to return to her artistic roots, Amanda has built a professional illustration portfolio and is now loving every bit of her illustration career!
Treasures You Seek — 2021
Carnovsky is a design duo comprised of Francesco Rugi and Silvia Quintanilla active in Milan since 2007. Carnovsky’s best known project is titled RGB. The superimposition of different images, each one in a primary color, results in unexpected and disorienting worlds where the colors mix up and the lines and shapes entwine becoming oneiric and not completely clear. Through a colored filter (Red, Green and Blue) it is possible to discover the layers in which the image is composed.
Lost In Time — 2020
Michaela Goade is an illustrator for picture books such as We Are Water Protectors and Shanyaak’utlaax: Salmon Boy, winner of the 2018 American Indian Youth Literature Award for Best Picture Book. Her book Encounter is featured in Club Nova this month.
In recent years, Michaela’s work has focused on Indigenous KidLit. She is an enrolled member of the Tlingit & Haida Indian Tribes of Alaska. Following the artist path has enabled her to reconnect with her culture, and it’s become an anchor in a sea of overwhelming creative possibility. Michaela was raised in Juneau, Alaska, where she lives today with her partner.
Helena Perez Garcia
A Spark of Life — 2020
Helena Perez Garcia is a Spanish illustrator whose work has appeared across magazines, newspapers, packaging and books for children and adults internationally. Her illustrations are conceptual, whimsical and rich in detail and color. Helena’s primary medium is gouache and her main sources of inspiration are art, literature, and cinema. Some of her clients include Penguin Books, The Body Shop, Tate Publishing, BBC, The Financial Times, Reader’s Digest and Il Corriere della Sera, amongst many others.
Jarrett and Jerome Pumphrey
Where The Heart Resides — 2020
Jarrett Pumphrey is an author/illustrator and the former CEO of a tech startup. Jerome Pumphrey (pictured) is an author/illustrator and a graphic designer at The Walt Disney Company. The brothers collaborate as both author and illustrator on their projects. The Old Truck, published by Norton Young Readers, is their author-illustrator debut and is featured in Club Sprout this month. Originally from Houston, the Pumphrey brothers both now live in Austin, Texas.
Where The Heart Resides — 2020
Esmé Shapiro is an illustrator and author of books for children. She spent her childhood roaming around the dry brush and blossomed succulents of Laurel Canyon, California. She eventually ventured east and settled in Brooklyn, New York. Her childhood never roamed too far from her heart, and she has a deep held belief that this time in one’s life is immensely powerful. Children are always busy at work, carving out their inner worlds that eventually become the foundation for the rest of their lives. Esmé makes books that aim to be fuel for their imaginations, with a strong emphasis on the importance of empathy and friendship.
Dream A Little Dream — 2019
Jessica Hische is a lettering artist and author working in San Francisco and Brooklyn. She’s been named a Print Magazine New Visual Artist (20 under 30), one of Forbes 30 under 30 in Art and Design two years in a row, an ADC Young Gun, and a “Person to Watch” by GD USA. Aside from her illustrious client work, she has created numerous side projects including Daily Drop Cap, Should I Work for Free?, Mom This is How Twitter Works, and Don’t Fear the Internet (created along with Russ Maschmeyer).
A Touch of Genius — 2019
Award-winning Felicita Sala is a self-taught illustrator and painter. She graduated in Philosophy from the University of Western Australia. She has illustrated for various food magazines and created stop motion animations with husband and animator, Gianluca Maruotti, but her passion is making picture books. She draws inspiration from folk art and music, mid-century illustration, byzantine iconography, nature, and children. She lives in Rome with Gianluca and their daughter, Nina.
A Touch of Genius — 2019
Jessie Sima is an author/illustrator living and working in New York City. She grew up in a small town in southern New Jersey, unaware that she was a storyteller. Once she figured it out, she told her family and friends. They took it quite well. She is the author of Not Quite Narwhal; Harriet Gets Carried Away; Love, Z; Snow Pony and the Seven Miniature Ponies; Spencer’s New Pet; and Jules vs. the Ocean.
Storyland — 2019
Davide is an Italian artist living in Spain. Soon after earning his diploma at Foiso Fois Arts High School in Cagliari, Sardinia, he took up a career as a graphic designer. At the same time, he kept up his skills in oil painting, taking part in several art exhibitions. When he moved to Madrid in 2008, he discovered children’s book illustration. Gloomy open spaces, dreamy in-between atmospheres, and imaginary elements are the main features of his work. He is on a quest to conjure colorful and fantastic places, where time stops to offer the biggest emotions to the smallest people.
Animalia — 2019
Misha Maynerick Blaise is a Croatian American, born in Canada, and raised in the Colorado Rockies. Her most recent book, This Phenomenal Life, has been translated into 5 languages. She now calls Austin, Texas home. Check out our interview with Misha on the Literati blog.
Around the Campfire — 2019
Steve Adams has been illustrating for almost 30 years. He has received accolades for his illustrations from The Society of Illustrators, American Illustration, the 3×3 International ProShow, and others. Steve taps into his nostalgic sensibility and his own childhood memories for inspiration while working from his home in Montreal.
Let It Glow — 2019
Sophie Blackall is an award-winning illustrator of over 45 books for children, including the New York Times best-selling Ivy and Bean series, the 2016 Caldecott Medal winner, Finding Winnie and the 2019 Caldecott Medal winner, Hello Lighthouse, which she also wrote. She is the four-time recipient of The New York Times Best Illustrated Picture Book Award. Check out our interview with Sophie on the Literati blog.
Beyond Reach — 2019
Stasia is a full-time artist and illustrator. Her artwork, inspired in part by Japanese cartoons and art nouveau, can be found across picture books, graphic novels, and her solo shows around the Northwestern US. Her picture book with author Roda Ahmed, Mae Among the Stars, was featured in Club Sprout.
Mix It Up — 2019
Joe is an award-winning illustrator, director, and designer. Joe worked with author William Joyce to create the award-winning short film, The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore, and a picture book adaptation featured in Club Nova. Joe established Sweet Cloud Studio with his wife, Mary, where they both continue to create art across media.
Blue Planet — 2019
Benji Davies is an illustrator, author, and animation director. He's the award-winning author and illustrator of The Storm Whale, featured in Club Sprout, as well as The Storm Whale in Winter, Grandad's Island, and more. Davies lives with his wife and daughter in London.
Global Soul — 2019
Matt Lamothe is the author and illustrator of the children's book This is How We Do It. He is part of the award-winning design company ALSO, as well as the co-author of multiple art books including The Where, the Why, and the How. He lives and works in Chicago.
Amy June Bates
The Golden Rule — 2019
Amy June Bates has illustrated over fifty books for children including Ketzel, The Cat Who Composed, The Dog Who Belonged to No One, Sweet Dreams and That’s What I’d Do (both by singer-songwriter Jewel) and many more. She earned her B.A. in illustration from Brigham Young University. Originally from Utah, Amy has lived all over the country. Currently, she and her family of artists reside in Carlisle, Pennsylvania.
Big Ideas — 2019
Rose Blake is an illustrator, artist, and visiting lecturer at her alma mater, Kensington University. She has illustrated several picture books, including We're All Works of Art, featured in Club Sprout this month, and the award-winning David Hockney and Martin Gayford; A History of Pictures for Children. As a commercial artist, Rose’s work has graced the likes of The New Yorker, Disney, BBC, Snapchat, Volkswagen, and more.
This Is Magic — 2018
Sonja Wimmer is an internationally renowned illustrator of picture books in numerous languages. Her work has won multiple awards including the 2012 International Latino Book Awards, Second Place for Best Children’s Picture Book-English, and the 2011 Moonbeam Children’s Book Awards Gold Medal for Best Illustrator. She lives with her family near the German Alps between two rivers and surrounded by forests.
Great Minds — 2018
Isabelle Arsenault is an internationally renowned children’s book illustrator whose work has won numerous awards and praise from critics. Cloth Lullaby—featured in Club Nova—won the Bologna Ragazzi Award in 2017. She has won the prestigious Governor General’s Award for Children’s Literature three times, and two of her picture books were named as New York Times Best Illustrated Books of the Year.
The Music in Me — 2018
Jessica Courtney-Tickle graduated from Kingston University in July 2014 where she studied illustration and animation, specializing in children's picture books. She was longlisted for the Waterstones Children's Book Prize 2017 and shortlisted for the 2014 Prize for Illustration with the Association of Illustrators. Jessica lives in Cambridgeshire, England.
All in the Neighborhood: A Literati Community Curation — 2018
Jessica Love is a New York based actor and visual artist. She is the author and illustrator of the critically acclaimed Julián is a Mermaid published in 2018 by Candlewick Press (and featured in Club Nova). She studied visual art at The University of California, Santa Cruz and then went on to study Drama at the Juilliard School. Jessica has appeared in plays both on and off-Broadway since 2009. She lives in Brooklyn.
Wit + Wisdom — 2018
David McClellan’s immersive artwork is inspired by both the natural world and the realm of the fantastical. His first picture book, The Boy Who Spoke To The Earth, (written by Chris Burkard) was featured in Club Nova in August. David lives with his wife and four sons in Utah, where he works as an interactive artist at WBGames.
Stars, Infinity & Beyond — 2018
Lisa Evans is an award-winning illustrator and game developer. She won the Moonbeam Children’s Book award for best illustrator for The Man Made Of Stars, which was featured in Club Nova. Lisa is currently developing an adventure game for PC called Growbot. She resides in England with her partner, two-year-old son, and a growing collection of kaiju toys.
Game On! — 2018
Dan Santat is a prolific, award-winning author and illustrator, having created over fifty titles including Dude! which was featured in Club Nova. Winner of the Silver Medal from the Society of Illustrators, Dan is also the creator of the Disney animated hit, The Replacements. He lives in Southern California with his wife, two kids, and various pets.
Eureka! — 2018
Award-winning author and illustrator Joe Todd-Stanton is the creator of the Brownstone’s Mythical Collection series and The Secret of Black Rock for Flying Eye Books in the UK. Marcy and the Riddle of the Sphinx—Joe’s much anticipated follow-up to Arthur and the Golden Rope—was featured in Club Sage in May month. He lives in South London.
The Earth Speaks — 2018
Sandra Dieckmann is an illustrator, author and maker. She works in a multitude of media from pencil and paint to digital and clay. Leaf, her debut children’s book which was featured in Club Sprout in April, was nominated for the Kate Greenaway Medal, long-listed for the Klaus Flugge Prize, and shortlisted for the Waterstones Children’s book prize. She resides in London.
Our Great Civilization — 2018
Anja Klauss is a German illustrator based in France. Since graduating from the Kassel School of Fine Arts in Germany and École Supérieure des Arts Décoratifs in France, she has published numerous children’s books including The Little Hippo: A Children’s Book Inspired by Egyptian Art which was featured in Club Nova in March. Anja specializes in mixed media, usually acrylic, graphite, and gouache painting.
In My Heart — 2018
Emma Dodd is an illustrator and author. She won the Booktrust award for I Love My Mummy in 2010 and was nominated for the Kate Greenaway Medal for I Love Bugs. A fan favorite for past Literati features, her book Forever was featured in Club Sprout in February. She lives in England with her husband, two children, several chickens, and their Jack Russell Terrier mix, Buzz.
What Dreams Are Made Of — 2018
Laura Freeman has illustrated over 20 children’s books, including Hidden Figures featured in Club Nova in January, the Nikki & Deja series and Fancy Party Gowns. In addition to illustrating books and editorial content, her art can be found on a wide range of products, from dishes and textiles to greeting cards. Laura resides in Atlanta with her husband and two children.
Magic Doors & Secret Passageways — 2017
Pamela Zagarenski is a painter and children’s book author and illustrator. She has won two Caldecott Honors for Sleep Like A Tiger and Red Sings from Treetops: A Year in Colors. She is also the recipient of an IBBY Honor by the Hans Christian Anderson committee. The Whisper—her wondrous tale about reading—was featured in Club Nova in December. (We also enclosed a frame-ready 9 x 12 print from the The Whisper in every box!) Pamela lives in Mystic, Connecticut.
Heroes — 2017
Brian Biggs is an author and illustrator best known for his New York Times bestselling Frank Einstein series, Everything Goes and the Tinyville Town books—including I’m a Veterinarian which was featured in Club Neo in November. His illustrations have appeared in magazines, newspapers, advertising, posters, toys, and puzzles. The father of two fun kids, he works out of an old garage in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
The Light in the Dark — 2017
Gabriel Alborozo is an author and illustrator of numerous children’s books including The Mouse and the Moon—which was featured in Club Sprout in October. He began work as a cartoonist at the tender age of fifteen working for magazines such as Private Eye, Punch and The Spectator. His first love is, and always has been, writing and illustrating for children. Gabe lives with his wife on the south coast of England.
The Misfits — 2017
Kathryn Otoshi is an award-winning author and illustrator, best known for her number book series, One, Two, and Zero — which was featured in Club Nova in September. These character-building books promote empathy and social justice. She travels across the country engaging teachers and students to connect and develop strong character assets through reading, art, and the power of literature. Kathryn lives in the San Francisco Bay area.
Laughter is the Best Medicine — 2017
Jared Chapman has always loved to draw. He even went to college for it. Before working in picture books, Jared lived in Austin, TX with his wife and kids. Now they live in the same town Jared and his wife grew up in. He has written and illustrated numerous books for children. His hysterically clever Vegetables in Underwear was featured in Club Sprout in August. Jared’s clients include Walt Disney Television Animation, Nick Jr., Nike, and McSweeney’s.
The Spirit of Adventure — 2017
William Grill is a young author and illustrator who works predominately in colored pencil. At age 25, he was the youngest recipient of the Kate Greenaway Medal in 50 years for his debut book, Shackleton’s Journey—featured in Club Sage in July. William’s second book, The Wolves of Currumpaw, recently won the 2017 Bologna Ragazzi award for children’s non-fiction. His clients include Harrods, The New York Times, Shelter and Amnesty International.
Under The Sea — 2017
Jenni Desmond is a picture book maker based in Hackney, London UK. Her books have been translated into over 20 languages. In 2015 she won Best Emerging Talent (Illustrator) at the Junior Design Awards. In 2016 she was made a Maurice Sendak Fellow and her book The Polar Bear won a prestigious New York Times Best Illustrated Children's Books award. She works by hand using mixed media, and finishes the artwork digitally. Her book The Blue Whale was featured in Club Nova.
The Sleuths — 2017
Graeme Base is one of the world’s leading creators of picture books. Animalia received international acclaim when it was first published in 1986 and it has achieved classic status with worldwide sales of more than two million copies. Base lives in Melbourne with his artist wife Robyn and their three children. Graeme's book, The Eleventh Hour, was featured in Club Sage for May's curation.
Friendship — 2017
Yangsook Choi started drawing at age 4 and loved telling her grandma scary stories. Her books have been included on the American Library Association Notable Book list, selected by PBS Reading Rainbow, and have received the International Reading Association's Children's Book Award. Yangsook's book, The Name Jar, was featured in Club Nova for April's curation.
The Animal Kingdom — 2017
Molly Idle began her career as an artist working for DreamWorks Animation, and from there she leapt into the world of children's books. She lives in Tempe, Arizona, where she dances through life with her handsome husband, mischievous children, and fabulous family and friends. Molly's book, Flora & The Flamingo, was featured in Club Sprout for March's curation.
For the Love of Art — 2017
Louis Thomas is an author, illustrator, and fine artist. Louis lives and works in his art studio between the Pantheon and the Luxembourg Gardens. He shares his studio with his beloved cat, Pipo, who is good at giving hugs—especially when Louis is working on a new project. His book, 88 Instruments, was featured in Club Sprout for February's curation.
Science, Innovation & Exploration — 2017
Nani Brunini is an illustrator with a mild shopping addiction to picture books and houseplants. Originally from São Paulo, she currently lives among the beautiful hills of San Francisco, CA. She also spent some time living in the UK, Finland, and Germany, working in design studios and doing what she likes the most - talking to people from around the globe and getting a grasp of how enormously different and similar the world really is.