Biography

Ever since I was a child, I knew I wanted to be an artist.  My Air Force dad would often bring home crayons, paper, and coloring books from his TDYs.  We moved around a lot when I was growing up but I always had my art supplies and beloved books in tow. In high school my art teacher, Ms. Weinstein, encouraged me to pursue art as a career.  This, along with several scholarships and my family’s support, led me to the Rhode Island School of Design.

Since graduating with a BFA in Illustration, I’ve worked with several clients nationwide, including children’s book publishers, magazine publishers, media companies, cultural centers, and private collectors. I like to work on projects that build on my strong multicultural traditions, but also anything that lights the spark of imagination.

I often enjoy visiting schools, workshops, and conferences to talk with enthusiastic readers, writers, and artists of all ages about illustrating children’s books. Additionally, I mentor aspiring writers and illustrators and frequently work as an event coordinator, creating memorable workshops for lovers of children's literature. I currently reside in historic Providence, RI.


Honors

Nominee, The Tejas Star Book Award for Adelita and the Veggie Cousins 2012-2013
Nominee, The Tejas Star Book Award for Baseball on Mars 2010-2011
Nominee, The Tejas Star Book Award for We are Cousins 2009-2010
Gold Medal Winner for The Wishing Tree, Mom’s Choice 2009
Silver Medal Winner for Storm Codes, Mom’s Choice 2009
Book of the Year Finalist for Storm Codes, Foreword Magazine 2007
Honorable Mention for Storm Codes, Northeastern Minnesota Book Awards 2007
Midwest Favorite for Storm Codes, Midwest Booksellers Association 2007
Winner, Rhode Island School of Design Scholarship 1999-2003
Winner, Air Force Aid Society Scholarship 1999-2003
Winner, Airmen Memorial Foundation Scholarship 1999-2001

Professional Affiliations

The Children's Literature Research Collections
Children's Literature Network
The Children's Book Illustrator's Guild of MN
Society of Children's Book Writers & Illustrators
Rhode Island School of Design Alumni


Interviews

RISDiversity: A Community Narratives Project, May 2013
Día de los Niños / Día de los Libros Blog Hop, Apr. 2013
Latinas for Latino Children's Literature Twitter Book Party, Dec. 2012
Lauri Stumph Photography, Apr. 2010
Kids Clubhouse, Children's Hospitals of MN, Mar. 2010
Reading Minnesota, Dec. 2009
Proofsheet, As Written By Teens, Nov. 2009
KUHF.FM 88.7  Radio, Oct. 2009
The Bluestocking Guide, Mar. 2009
MNSCBWI Cygnet, April 2006
RISD Multiculturalism, Dec. 2005

Select Appearances

Necronomicon-Providence, Providence, RI, Aug. 2013
NESCBWI Regional Conference, Springfield, MA, May 2013
LILA Literacy Celebration, Forest Lake, MN, Apr. 2011
CLN Books for Breakfast, Plymouth, MN, Feb. 2011
Twin Cities Book Festival, Minneapolis, MN, Oct. 2010
The Shops at West End, St. Louis Park, MN, Sept. 2010
Lakes International Language Academy, Forest Lake, MN, Dec. 2009
Tau State Award Luncheon, Red Wing, MN, Apr. 2009
Becker Primary School, Becker, MN, Feb. 2009
Stillwater Armory Show, Stillwater, MN, Nov. 2008
MEMO Fall Conference, Minneapolis, MN, Oct. 2008
Hardwood Creek Library, Forest Lake, MN, Nov. 2007
Deep Valley Book Festival, Mankato, MN, Nov. 2007
Minnesota SCBWI Fall Conference, Minneapolis, MN, Oct. 2007
The Valley Bookseller, Stillwater, MN, Oct. 2007
The Red Balloon, St. Paul, MN, Sept. 2007
Northern Lights Bookseller, Duluth, MN, Aug. 2007
Book Expo America, New York, NY, Jun. 2007


Collections & Exhibitions

RISD Annual Staff Art + Craft Exhibition, Providence, RI, 2014
Permanent Collection, Children’s Hospitals & Clinics, St. Paul, MN, 2011
Permanent Collection, The Children’s Literature Research Collections, Minneapolis, MN, 2011
Living Creatively, ArtReach Alliance, Stillwater, MN, 2010
Imagination, Exploration & Creativity, Minnesota Center for Book Arts, Minneapolis, MN, 2010
MN Made: Through the Eyes of CBIG, University of St. Thomas, St. Paul, MN, 2010
Children’s Book Illustrators, Red Wing Artists Association Depot Gallery, Red Wing, MN, 2010
Solo Exhibition, George Mason Regional Library, Annandale, VA, 2005

Teaching & Mentoring Experience

Freelance Mentoring, Stillwater, MN & Providence, RI, 2006 - Present
National Portfolio Days, Minneapolis, MN & Boston, MA, 2008 - Present
The Minnesota SCBWI, Minneapolis, MN, 2008 - 2009
Fairfax County Park Authority, Fairfax, VA, 2004 - 2005
Arlington County Parks & Recreation, Arlington, VA, 2003 - 2004
CityArts for Youth, Providence, RI, 2002