TED DEWAN has been a full-time illustrator and cartoonist since 1988. As a kid, he lived in Lexington, Massachusetts, drawing pictures and making music. At age 15 he won his first drawing competition at the local Baskin Robbins Ice Cream store. The prize was a pink card entitling him to 31 free ice cream cones.
He began his professional illustration career by placing free advertisements in the local newspaper, The Lexington Minute Man, for his services as an illustrator. At the age of 16, he received his first book commission, drawing pictures for I Am, I Can, a handbook for daycare centers (still in print).
But his teenage preoccupation with rock music and synthesizers beguiled him into studying engineering and electronic music at Brown University in Rhode Island. While at Brown, he studied organ with university organist, Fred Macarthur, who not only taught him how to work hard towards a distant goal, but introduced him to childhood hero author/illustrator David Macaulay and studied drawing with him. After scraping through an unusually disasterous final year at college, he lived the comfortably engaging life of a boarding-school teacher.
For five years, he taught physics at Milton Academy just south of his native Boston, where he was known as "Mr. D". "Mr. D" went through a lot of trouble to play the part of a physics teacher. He bought a special puke green jacket, wore white lab coats when they weren't necessary, performed stunts with skateboards and fire extinguishers, and electrified a pickle to make it glow, all in the name of "science". When not busy in the science lab, he directed music shows, performed his dormitory duties, and patrolled the halls, bestowing reasonable punishments only when necessary.
A British girlfriend led him to London in 1988. There, he managed to make a living drawing for The Times Educational Supplement, the Times, The Guardian, The Independent, and The Daily Telegraph. In addition, he struggled for two years part time with his solo accordion act on London's comedy circuit. Often misunderstood and occasionally booed off the stage at such notorious venues as The Comedy Store and The Hackney Empire, his music and his artwork were nonetheless appreciated by Helen Cooper, another author/illustrator, who was especially fond of the golden egg given to him in 1992 for the Mother Goose.
After becoming a father in 1998, he decided to dedicate most of his time to writing and illustrating books. He occasionally reviews books and illustrates for The Times Educational Supplement and is a former chairman of the Children's Writers and Illustrator's Group (CWIG) of the Society of Authors.
Mr. Dewan writes and records music, making "soundtracks" for most of his picture books. He puts the music together with slides of artwork from the books to make "Magic Lantern" shows which he screens at schools and festivals. He hopes to release more commercial recordings in the future, and has plans to put the musical slide shows on WormWorks.com.
In 2001, he moved from London to Oxford with his wife, author/illustrator Helen Cooper, and their daughter, Pandora. Moving to Oxford allows him to work closely with David Fickling at David Fickling Books, a short bike ride from his home. Author Philip Pullman gave him his famous shed in 2002, so long as he did creative work in it and promised to pass it on to another artist, writer, or musician when he was finished with it, if it hadn't turned to dust in the meantime. The shed was duly blessed in a ceremony in 2003 which nearly set the shed on fire.
2002 was also a bumper year for awards, where Crispin the Pig Who Had It All won the Blue Peter Award and was an Honour book for the Kate Greenaway Award.
His other work includes the design and building of Oxford's first artist's Christmas Tree, the Cyclemas Tree (www.cyclemas.org). He is also a campaigner for more imaginative redesigns and repurposing of roads (www.roadwitch.org.uk)
The Baskin Robbins Ice Cream store in Lexington closed in the 1980's, leaving Mr. Dewan with two free ice cream cones unredeemed on his pink card. Unfortunately, the card clearly states that the free cones are only redeemable at the long-gone store. So on some future July 31 (Pandora's birthday), he hopes to find a Baskin Robbins Ice Cream store somewhere that will allow him to use up his last two free ice-cream cones.
TED DEWAN has been an illustrator and cartoonist since 1988 when he moved to London from his native USA. After studying engineering, organ, electronic music, and art (with David Macaulay) at Brown University in Rhode Island, he taught high-school physics for five years at Milton Academy near Boston, Massachusetts. Throughout the 1990's, his illustrations regularly appeared in The Independent, The Daily Telegraph, and The Sunday Times. Since winning the 1992 Mother Goose Award for Inside the Whale and Other Animals, he has created both fiction and non-fiction picture books, including The Sorcerer's Apprentice, Top Secret, and Crispin,The Pig Who Had It All (which won the Blue Peter Award).
He illustrates and writes reviews for The TES, and also writes and records musical "soundtracks" for most of his picture books, and maintains WormWorks.com, the website he shares with his wife, author/illustrator Helen Cooper. He is a former chair of the Children's Writers and Illustrator's Group (CWIG) of the Society of Authors and now lives in Oxford, England.
His other work includes the design and building of Oxford's first artist's Christmas Tree, the Cyclemas Tree. He is also a campaigner for more imaginative redesigns and repurposing of roads (www.roadwitch.org.uk)
TED DEWAN has been an illustrator and cartoonist since his teenage years.
He studied engineering, electronic music, and classical organ at Brown University, then taught high-school physics for five years at Boston's Milton Academy before moving to London in 1988.
He lives in Oxford, England with his wife, author/illustrator Helen Cooper, and their daughter, Pandora.