I was born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area. Originally, what sparked my interest in art was comic strips, comic books, and cartooning in general. Just prior to college I "discovered" the field of illustration, and ended up majoring in illustration at Art Center College of Design in Pasadena. Several years later, I received a Master's Degree in Illustration from Syracuse University.
After getting my Bachelors Degree, I moved back to the Bay Area, and started freelancing as an illustrator, working for every conceivable type of client. Eventually, I began to find most of my work in the publishing world; first doing bookjackets, and eventually, writing and illustrating children's books, which is what I still do to this day.
Four months after graduating from Art Center, I was hired to teach Figure Drawing and Perspective at The Academy of Art in San Francisco. A year later, I was hired at San Jose State University to teach in their illustration department (now the Animation/Illustration Department) and I've been teaching there ever since.
In 2005, I was hired onto the tenure track at SJSU as an Assistant Professor.
To date, I've published five books for children.
When I'm not working or teaching, I'm usually drawing. (Same activity, different purpose) If I'm not drawing, I probably have a book (usually non-fiction) or The New Yorker magazine in front of my face. (I only occasionally bump into the furniture) Failing that, you might find me making peculiar sounds with a guitar, or messing around in the kitchen or on a grill outside.
I'm a really, really, really lucky guy. I get to laugh a lot doing things I love to do. I have loving family and friends to help keep me sane, two different jobs that I enjoy---I get paid to draw naked people---and I work with brilliant friends/colleagues and eager students. Life is good.
I was incredibly fortunate to have been a student when I was, where I was, and there is no way I'd have the career I do now without the intellectual generosity of David Shannon, Joel Nakamura, Philip Hays, Ted Youngkin, Burne Hogarth, Dave Passalacqua, Murray Tinkelman, Gary Kelley, Anita Kunz; and many lesser known but equally wonderful instructors at Art Center College of Design: Brad Durham, David Mocarski, Lawrence Carroll, Bill Maughan, Judy Crook, Dwight Harmon, Richard Bunkall, Gary Meyer, Vince Robbins, Vern Wilson, and Harry Carmean. I owe them all a great debt.
As a professional, I've also benefitted tremendously from the friendship, encouragement, and instruction of Iain McCaig, Peggy Rathmann, Barron Storey, Glenn Vilppu, and Kit Hinrichs.
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