candersonWhen I was a young cowgirl, I found endless imagery in the octagonal tiles that tessellated the length and width of the floor in my pink bathroom. These tile epiphanies were the start of an interest in art and design, my major at UCLA, and a field I have engaged in since, working in graphic design, scientific rendering, painting, and illustration.

My artwork has appeared throughout the San Diego Zoo, in science journals, cookbooks, field guides, and children’s magazines, and at galleries including The Smithsonian Museum in Washington D.C.

My narrative images often combine paint and paper, a process reminiscent of hours I spent as a child making paper dolls and the stories that went with them. These days I design papers and collect bits and pieces of everything, using them with other media in my illustrations. I also gather images and experiences that evolve into stories for children.

childhood-cowgirl-photo2In addition to writing and making art, it has been a privilege and an inspiration to teach art and develop art curriculum. I live with my husband and sons in the San Francisco Bay area.


Smelling Sunshine     (Star Bright Books, fall 2013)

Smelling Sunshine, a picture book about hanging laundry that I wrote and illustrated, creates a path through various cultures by describing one world doing an ordinary chore that becomes extraordinary in its personal nighttime comfort. Kirkus Reviews said, “When it comes to domestic chores, hanging laundry is about as universal as it gets, and the activity is presented here as an intimate, positive experience for parent and child to share.”

A Stick Until      (Star Bright Books, release date 2017)

“A stick is a branch of a tree until it is a fly swatter. It is a fly swatter until it is a walking cane.” So begins A Stick Until…, a picture book for ages 4-8, that follows a stick on its journey as a tool, and from a tool to a toy, to a tree. It’s a story of transformation as well as of tool use. The stick is used by a wide range of animals, dwindles in size, is lost, found and used again. I designed the book as an illustrated journal with science notes.

Clients & Exhibitions include:

Star Bright Books, Cricket Magazine, San Diego Zoo, San Diego Wild Animal Park, San Diego Museum of Natural History, San Diego Audubon Society, Sunset Publishing, Berkeley Art Center, Cal State University Northridge, Colorado Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Museum of Natural History, Sun Gallery, Hayward CA, Village Art Theatre, Danville CA, 1337 Gallery, San Rafael CA