Doug Cushman was born in Springfield, Ohio and moved to Connecticut with his family when he was 14 years old. While in junior high and high school he created comic books lampooning his teachers, selling them to his classmates for a nickel a piece.
Since 1978 he has illustrated over 100 children's books, thirty or so of which he wrote as well. Among his many honors he has gained a place on the New York Times Children’s Best Sellers list and on the 2003 Children’s Literature Choice list. He has received a National Cartoonist’s Society Reuben award, the 2004 Christopher Award for his book illustrations, the 2007 Maryland Blue Crab Award and the 2009 California Young Readers Medal. He is a fan of mystery novels and enjoys cooking, traveling, eating and absorbing French culture and inspiration, as well as a few extra kilos, in his new home in Saint Malo, on the Brittany Coast in France.
In the many well-received picture books Doug Cushman has written and illustrated, his emphasis on character is evident in both text and artwork. As he once commented: "A good character will almost write a book by himself with a little nudge or two from the author." Of course pictures, too, play an important role. The inspirations of many stories have been born with a scribbled character in a sketch book or a café napkin. From there on it’s a process of moving characters and plot around, adding subtracting, throwing out, rewriting. “It’s a very physical process,” Cushman has said. “My first dummies are almost collages with scraps of paper taped all over the pages. Words and pictures must work together in unison, one not more important than the other. In the end, of course, it’s always story, story, story.”