Meet the artist: Jerry Pinkney

Megan Kaesshaefer  //  Dec 2, 2013

Meet the artist: Jerry Pinkney

As many of our readers know, for the past few weeks, we've been highlighting artwork from our Art of Read Every Day collection. Each week we share artwork, information about an artist (his or her inspiration, career accomplishments, etc.) and companion resources like video and discussion guides through our social media channels.

This week, the spotlight is on Jerry PinkneyJerry Pinkney is a highly acclaimed illustrator and the recipient of numerous awards, including a Caldecott Medal for The Lion and the Mouse, five Caldecott Honor Medals, and five Coretta Scott King Awards. Jerry Pinkney was elected into the Society of Illustrators Hall of Fame in 2011.

As a child, Pinkney started drawing in part due to an abundance of pencils, which were given to him by his grandfather who worked at a nearby pencil factory in Philadelphia. He was also fond of sketching his surroundings—people waiting for the bus, people buying the morning newspaper, the window displays of large department stores—and got his break when a professional artist saw him sketching and took him under his wing.

His career path is truly an exceptional story, and we're so pleased to have his work in the collection. I think his artwork in particular captures the festive spirit of the holidays, with the opossum hanging from a branch against a starry, wintry background.

You can download the art for free on our website, and while you're there, be sure to check out the companion resources:

We hope you enjoy these resources as much as we do. 

Original artwork by Jerry Pinkney