Helen Oxenbury's books have received numerous awards (including the Kate Greenaway Medal, England's equivalent to the Caldecott) and continue to resound with readers from babies to adults. Seemingly simple illustrations capture humor, drama, and more in an appealing and memorable way.
You can also see our exclusive video interview with writer Mem Fox, Oxenbury's partner on Ten Little Fingers and Ten Little Toes.
Helen Oxenbury always seemed to be drawing while she was growing up in Ipswich, England. As a teenager, she used her artistic bent with the repertory theater and decided that she would go into theater design. An astute teacher, however, suggested that Helen was more interested in character than costume design and that illustration may be a better choice for her interest. Nonetheless, Helen worked in theater design as a young adult. Perhaps it was her marriage to well known children's book author/illustrator, John Burningham that allowed Helen to rethink her profession. Certainly, it was the birth of her first child that convinced Helen to begin to illustrate in earnest.