And Debby? She grew up to be the amazing children’s poet, Deborah Ruddell, author of the critically acclaimed (and hilarious) poetry collections, Today at the Bluebird Café, and A Whiff of Pine, A Hint of Skunk. I’ve had the ultimate thrill of illustrating her adorable picture book, Who Said Coo? Read all about her at www.deborahruddell.com
y first studio was on our front porch, where my mom set up a card table with paint-by-number sets for my twin sister Debby and me. It was a long time ago, when no one thought a thing about letting little kids paint with real oil paints.
I don’t remember how the paintings turned out, but I clearly remember Mom shooing the neighborhood kids off the porch so we could paint in peace. I had the impression that we were doing important, serious work, at least in our mom’s eyes. We were artists.
Now I have my own house, with a small second-floor studio in Urbana, Illinois. I’m having the time of my life writing and illustrating books for children. These days, I paint safely with acrylics, though.