Illustrators

Frances Wolfe

Author/illustrator Frances Wolfe worked in the Halifax Regional Library system for more than thirty years. Most of those years were spent in the Children’s Services Department, where she became an accomplished storyteller, puppeteer and children’s programmer. Frances has drawn inspiration for her work from the the many children’s authors and illustrators, to whom she was exposed and which she admired, while working at the library. She is a self-taught artist and has illustrated all of her books.

Frances and her husband live in a house they built on the shores of Nova Scotia. It stands on a piece of land that has been in her family for almost two centuries. Her love of the sea is evident in her first book, Where I Live, as well as her second offering, One Wish, both of which are available in English and Spanish. Her newest book, The Little Toy Shop, is a departure from the ocean theme. It is a tender tale of love lost and found again at the most magical time of Christmas.

Frances very much enjoys meeting and speaking with children about her work.

Geoff Butler

Geoff Butler is a painter, writer and book illustrator. He was born on Fogo Island, Nfld., near Brimstone Head which has been designated by the Flat Earth Society as one of the four corners of the earth.

Geoff practices his art daily so as not to fall over the edge. He has self-published five books: Art of War: Painting it out of the Picture (1990); The Look of Angels: Angels in Art (2004), a collection of poems, songs, stories, paintings and drawings; and With Every Breath We Take (2007), a modern fable in which a snowflake helps put an end to war; Our Own Little World: in paintings and verse (2013); and One Swallow Makes a Summer Meal: allegories in paintings and verse (2016). Every now and then, he strolls down Alphabet Soup Road to write and illustrate children’s books.

He is a graduate of Memorial University of Newfoundland and Syracuse University. He also studied at the Art Students’ League in New York City. His paintings have been exhibited at, and toured by, the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia. He has been a visual arts recipient of a Nova Scotia Arts Council Creation grant and a Canada Council Established Artist grant. In 2006, he was elected a member of the Royal Canadian Academy of Arts. He lives in the small village of Granville Ferry, N.S.

Jan L. Coates

Jan Coates lives in Wolfville, NS with her husband and their Golden Irish, Charlie. She has two married children (sadly in Ontario) and loves visiting schools through the Writers in the Schools (WITS) program. Jan’s interest in writing for children grew out of her own love of words and stories and a passion for helping kids become lifelong readers and writers.

In her free time, Jan can be found on the badminton court, travelling, at the gym, the cottage, or Frenchy’s. Her first picture book, Rainbows in the Dark (Second Story Press, 2005) has been translated into Spanish, Catalan, and Braille, with Korean and Brazilian rights also sold. She has also written eighteen ESL illustrated chapter books for Caramel Tree, a Korean-based English Language School publisher.

Her debut novel, A Hare in the Elephant’s Trunk (Red Deer Press, 2010), was a finalist for the Governor General’s Literary Award (Children’s Text) in 2011, as well as an Ann Connor Brimer Award finalist. She has also written five middle grade novels; The Hermit (Nimbus, 2020); Say What You Mean (Nevermore, 2019); Talking to the Moon (Red Deer, 2018),The Power of Harmony (Red Deer, 2013), also a Brimer finalist, and Rocket Man, a YALSA Quick Pick for Reluctant Readers  (Red Deer, 2014). Jan’s picture books include: Dancing with Daisy (Running the Goat, 2019); Karissa & Felix (self-published, as both author and illustrator, 2019);  A Halifax Time-Travelling Tune (Nimbus, 2018), Sky Pig (Pajama Press, 2016), The King of Keji (Nimbus, 2015), and Rainbows in the Dark (Second Story Press, 2005). Her current passion (other than learning to illustrate and creating soul smiles, her greeting cards) is writing a work of creative non-fiction for young readers about Canadian landscape painter (and all-around interesting person) Doris McCarthy (1910 – 2010). Forthcoming books in 2022 include: “Anna Maria & Maestro Vivaldi” (Red Deer Press) and “The Pocket Pig” – both author/illustrator  (Pandamonium Publishing House).

Dr. George Burden

Dr. George Burden has had an active twenty five year career as a freelance writer, with a focus on travel, but with publications encompassing the gamut of medical-history, human interest, humour, poetry and fiction.

George has placed articles with markets as diverse as The Readers Digest, The Halifax Sunday Herald, The Medical Post, Funny Times, The Writer and Just For Canadian Doctors, among many others.

His adventures have taken him to the shores of all seven continents and into the waters of all five oceans.  He has ventured from shipwrecks in the depths of the Atlantic to the cockpit of an airborne F-18 fighter jet, from the crater of an active Antarctic volcano to a private audience with the King of the Ashanti at his palace in Kumasi. 

Dr. Burden is a past recipient of the Governor General’s Medal.  He has served with the venerable Explorers Club as regional chairman for Quebec/Atlantic provinces and in the role of Director at Large for the organization.  George became a Fellow of the Royal Canadian Geographical Society in 2012.  In 2014 George succeeded his father as the 31st Baron of Seabegs (Seybeggis-traditional), Stirlingshire, Scotland.  He is currently an associate member of the Standing Council of Scottish Chiefs in Edinburgh as well as the Canadian Commissioner for the Scottish Clan Lamont.  

George published his first book, Amazing Medical Stories, co-authored with Dorothy Grant, in May of 2003 with Goose Lane Editions.  He was also the recipient of the Travel Media Association of Canada’s:

Choice Hotels Award of Excellence for Best Canadian Story-2005

Days Inn Canadian Family Travel Writing Award-2007

He won 3 awards at the 2010 North American Travel Journalism Awards.

Gold – Category 143: Resorts – “Chilling Out at Quebec City’s Le Chateau Entente”
(Published at Life As A Human on July 30th, 2010)

Silver – Category 128: Intergenerational and Family Travel – “Princess for a Day”
(Published at The Medical Post, April 6, 2010 Issue)

Bronze – Category 150: Cultural, Educational, Self-Improvement Travel – “Having a Ball, Vienna Style”
(Published at Life As A Human on June 12th, 2010)

At present his interest is focused on producing articles for the travel and adventure market.

 

Jenni Blackmore

A new season just beginning! Definitely time to upgrade my bio; even though some things never change life’s experience continually morphs and expands. Have to love that 🙂

Part of me is still the kid from Manchester, England, who always wanted to be a writer, a painter and a farmer, living by the ocean, and much to my amazement, here I am, living my dream on a small island just east of Halifax. Of course I’m greatly influenced by the coastal environment and references to this locale have a way of sneaking into most of my work. I love my reality but I usually can’t resist adding a twist or two of magic to my work, especially my favorite genres of poetry, adult short fiction and childrens fiction.

As an illustrator and writer, I like to combine both these forms of expression, especially in my books for children. Recently, however the denizens of QuackaDoodle Farm, who take up a fair amount of my attention, have been demanding their space on the page and this has resulted in, Permaculture for the Rest of Us (New Society Publishing) a factual account of life here at QuackaDoodle,  my blog site  QuackaDoodle.Wordpress.com and occassional posts on the Mother Earth News Site.

My latest book The Foodlovers’ Garden (New Society) is scheduled for release May 2017 and I was delighted to be able to illustrate this with thirty+ illustrations and forty digital images, all celebrating the wonders of homegrown food. Yum! And oh so colourful.

The second edition of Gully Goes to Halifax flew into my life recently. The story remains mostly unchanged but this edition has twice the page size and all the illustrations are in full colour, so I’m delighted about that.

I believe everyone is writer at heart because of course we all have things to say, ideas to share. This is one of the reasons why I particularly enjoy leading writing workshops for both children and adults but mostly, it’s about the stories that get shared. Surely story is the thread that binds us all together while, equally importantly, poetry tends to magnify and perhaps suggest a new way of seeing both the mundane and the magical.

Please visit me at: Quackadoodle.wordpress.com for sporadic but ongoing news of life down here on the farm

 Jenni has been mentioned in “Our Choice Book List” and “Outstanding Canadian Children’s Books” by the Children’s Book Centre, Toronto. Her recent novel Island of Dead Souls came first in the Atlantic Writing competition YA category.

Jo Treggiari

Jo Treggiari was born in London, England, and raised in Canada. She spent many years in Oakland, California and New York, where she trained as a boxer, wrote for a punk magazine, and owned a gangster rap/indie rock record label. Her novel Ashes, Ashes, a YA post-apocalyptic adventure published by Scholastic Press, was a multiple award nominee and bestseller. Her acclaimed novella Love You Like Suicide, appeared in the Fierce Ink Press anthology Becoming Fierce: Teen Stories IRL and as a limited edition of the long-running zine Cometbus. Her most recent YA novels are Blood Will Out, a psych-thriller, published by Penguin Teen (2018), and a second thriller, The Grey Sisters, (Penguin Teen 2019) which was a finalist for the Governor General’s Literary award and was shortlisted for an Arthur Ellis award.

Kathy Kaulbach

Kathy Kaulbach lives and works in Prospect Bay, Nova Scotia. Originating as a graphic designer, she worked in museums and as a freelancer for many years doing a variety of print and exhibit work in the educational and publishing fields. She has illustrated over a dozen children’s books and designed over 200 publications. After an eight year pause in her children’s illustration, Kathy returned in 2006, as HildaRose, to her ‘soul work’ in the children’s publishing industry. In a mix of both traditional and digital, her work continues to be humourous and energetic with the usual odd batch of characters.

 

Emma FitzGerald

Emma FitzGerald was born in Southern Africa to Irish parents and grew up in Vancouver. She has studied both art and architecture, and is the author of Hand Drawn Halifax. She lives and draws in North End Halifax.

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