I was born in North Carolina in 1952. My father, a physics professor and astronomer, did research and taught at various universities. We moved often. As a child, I lived in North Carolina, Panama, Virginia, Kansas, California, and Colorado. Wherever we lived, I maintained a small menagerie of lizards, turtles, spiders, and other animals. I collected rocks and fossils. I built a chemistry lab in which many frightful smells and loud explosions were produced. With my father’s help, I assembled radios, electric motors, and other contraptions. I also spent a lot of time with books. My interest in science led me to believe that I’d be a scientist myself. At the last minute, however, I decided to go to art school in North Carolina, where I studied graphic design. After graduation I moved to New York City and worked in advertising and design, first in large firms and then with my wife, Robin Page, in our own small design firm.
Our daughter was born in 1986 and our first son two years later. Robin and I began reading to our children when they were just a few months old. We continued to read to them almost every evening until my daughter was a teenager. In many ways, it was the best part of the day. Reading to my own children started me thinking about writing and illustrating my own picture books. Our youngest son was born a few years after we moved to Colorado in 1994, providing us with a new audience and source of book ideas.
For me, making books represents the happy intersection of children, science, art, my design partnership with Robin, and my life-long love of reading.
Portrait of the artist as . . .
Robin and Steve: the early days
Looking south in the studio
With a friend at the Metropolitan Museum in NYC
Steve at the drawing table
Another view of the studio
Links to video and interviews
A video my son created about making The Animal Book
Interview with The Horn Book's Roger Sutton about The Animal Book (2016)
Interview with School Library Journal about Animals by the Numbers (2016)
Interview with the excellent children's book blog Seven Impossible Things Before Breakfast (2008)