Meet the Illustrator

Nancy Carpenter

Portrait of Nancy Carpenter

The first job Nancy Carpenter got after finishing college was an internship as a graphic reporter for a major news service. Graphic reporters created charts and maps to accompany news stories. Her first illustrations appeared in the New York Times. She also illustrated greeting cards.

As she continued to illustrate for newspapers, Carpenter got to know art directors in children's publishing. Her big break came when she was hired to create a book cover after another illustrator had trouble with it. Carpenter says, "I handed in a drawing the publisher was happy with, but they later ruined it by spilling something all over it. So I redid the job for free." A few days later, the publisher asked her to illustrate an entire book. Since then she has illustrated more than ten picture books.

When Nancy Carpenter meets kids, they often ask her whether she has a dog. "I always draw dogs," she says. "They also ask me what my cat's name is because I try to sneak my cat into every book."

Photography Credit


Other Books Illustrated by Nancy Carpenter

  • Masai and I
    (written by Virginia L. Kroll)
  • Lester's Dog
    (written by Karen Hesse)
  • Sitti's Secrets
    (written by Naomi Shihab Nye)
  • Washing the Willow Tree Loon
    (written by Jacqueline Briggs Martin)
  • A Sister's Wish
    (written by Kate Jacobs)
  • Can You Dance, Dalila?
    (written by Virginia L. Kroll)
  • Summer Camp, Ready or Not!
    (written by Sandra Belton)
  • Twinnies
    (written by Eve Bunting)
  • Members of the C.L.U.B.
    (written by Sandra Belton)
  • The Tree That Came to Stay
    (written by Anna Quindlen)
  • Dear Austin: Letters from the Underground Railroad
    (written by Elvira Woodruff)
  • Loud Emily
    (written by Alexis O'Neill)
  • A Picnic in October
    (written by Eve Bunting)
  • Brooklyn, Bugsy, and Me
    (written by Lynea Bowdish)
  • If You Ever Get Lost: The Adventures of Julia and Evan
    (written by Barbara Ann Porte)