I began drawing almost as soon as I learned to walk. I toddled into the studio, which was the room right next to mine, and discovered my father’s art supplies! I wasn’t really interested in the oil paints that he used, I went for the charcoal, the colored pencils and ink!
I wrote and illustrated my first full story when I was in fifth grade. I was a new student in a private school in Rhode Island. I discovered that I had come from a long line of writers because of the wonderful letters I found, written by earlier generations of my family. All the letters were addressed to 68 Mercer Street which is where they remained under my bed--the very same bed my mother slept in as a child. I still have those letters and read them often.
I might have begun my career as an author and illustrator much earlier if I hadn’t become a dancer first. I’ve learned that dance, writing and illustration make the same demands on an artist: discipline, respect for process and patience.
I’m delighted to know that my books are embraced by teachers and librarians. For many years, I volunteered in a first-grade classroom. The children gave me so much over the years; they’ve told me their stories, made me laugh and given me unconditional hugs and love. The ALA Notable Albert’s Alphabet is set on a school playground. Seven Albert books followed; some like Albert’s Field Trip, Albert’s Thanksgiving and Patsy Says are stories set in my fictional Pleasant Valley Elementary School. Life imitates art, which imitates life.
Member since 1986
Region: New England: South (Connecticut/Rhode Island)
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