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Donovan Bixley

Donovan Bixley-952Donovan Bixley was born in Perth, Australia, but shortly after, his family returned to New Zealand where Donovan grew up in the geothermal wilds of Taupo. From a young age Donovan showed a talent for drawing and his unmatched skill at depicting trucks was a great way to get the school bully on side. Books such as The HobbitThe Lord of the Rings, the Asterix adventures and Footrot Flats were a huge influence on his creative development.
After studying Graphic Design at AUT in Auckland, Donovan worked as a storyboard and editorial illustrator. Since then he has illustrated over 90 books published in 27 countries. His work covers a broad range of genres from his best-selling preschool books The Wheels on the Bus and Old MacDonald’s Farm, to his his internationally acclaimed illustrated biographies Faithfully Mozart and Much Ado About Shakespeare which won the Russell Clark Award for best illustration at the 2016 NZ Book Awards for Children and Young Adults.

Donovan’s real passion is for illustrated novels for junior fiction readers, where he gets to combine his love of words and pictures. His innovative hybrid part-novel part-comic Monkey Boy has won multiple awards including Best Junior Fiction at the 2015 NZ Book Awards for Children and Young Adults. He is currently immersed in the world of pussycats in planes in Paris for his new international junior fiction series, Flying Furballs.
He is an admiring fan of Neil Gaiman and counts The Lorax as his most loved picture book. Favourite artists include Norman Rockwell, Edgar Degas, John Howe, Dave McKean, Edmund Dulac, Bill Peet, Mordillo, Shawn Tan and Chris Riddell.

Selected bibliography:
  • Harry Hobnail and the Pungapeople text by Barry Crump (Hodder Moa Beckett 2002).
  • Mr Tanglewood and the Pungapeople text by Barry Crump (Hodder Moa Beckett 2005).
  • Wacko Kakapo text by Yvonne Morrison (Scholastic 2007).
  • The Tuatara and the Skink text by Yvonne Morrison (Scholastic 2009).
  • A Right Royal Christmas text by Lucy Davey (Scholastic 2009).
  • The Wheels on the Bus (Hodder Moa 2010).
  • Phoebe and the Night Creatures text by Jenny Hessell (Scholastic 2011).
  • Dinosaur Rescue: T-Wreck-a-saurus text by Kyle Mewburn (Scholastic 2011).
  • Dinosaur Rescue: Stego-snotty-saurus text by Kyle Mewburn (Scholastic 2011).
  • Northwood text by Brian Falkner (Walker Books 2011).
  • Old MacDonald's Farm (Hodder Hoa 2011).
  • 501 Great Kiwi Jokes (Scholastic 2011).
  • Dinosaur Rescue: Velocitchy-raptor text by Kyle Mewburn (Scholastic 2011).
  • Dinosaur Rescue: Diplo-dizzydocus text by Kyle Mewburn (Scholastic 2011).
  • Dinosaur Rescue: Spino-rottysaurus text by Kyle Mewburn (Scholastic 2012).
  • The Story of Bo and the Circus That Wasn't text by Kyle Mewburn and selected Telecom customers (Scholastic 2012).
  • Dinosaur Rescue: Dako-snappysaurus text by Kyle Mewburn (Scholastic 2012).
  • The Looky Book (Hachette 2012).
  • Maddy West and the Tongue Taker text by Brian Falkner (Walker Books 2012).
  • Dinosaur Rescue: Scuto-stickysaurus text by Kyle Mewburn (Scholastic 2012).
  • Dinosaur Rescue: Salto-scaredypus text by Kyle Mewburn (Scholastic 2013).
  • Three Bears (Sort of) text by Yvonne Morrison (Scholastic 2013).
  • Dashing Dog text by Margaret Mahy (Harper Collins 2013)
  • The Weather Machine (Hachette 2013)
  • Little Bo Peep and More (Upstart Press 2014)
  • Monkey Boy (Scholastic 2014)
  • Pussycat Pussycat and More (Upstart Press 2015)
  • Little Red Riding Hood Not Quite text by Yvonne Morrison (Scholatsic 2015)
  • Dragon Knight Fire! text by Kyle Mewburn (Scholastic 2015)
  • Dragon Knight Rats! text by Kyle Mewburn (Scholastic 2015)
  • Dragon Knight Witch! text by Kyle Mewburn (Scholastic 2015)
  • Dragon Knight Dragons! text by Kyle Mewburn (Scholastic 2015)
  • Dragon Knight Joust! text by Kyle Mewburn (Scholastic 2016)
  • Dragon Knight Barbarians! text by Kyle Mewburn (Scholastic 2016)
  • Fuzzy Doodle, text by Melinda Szymanik (Scholastic 2016)
  • Flying Furballs Book 1 Dogfight (Upstart Press 2016)
  • Much Ado About Shakespeare (Upstart Press 2016)
 Awards:
  • Storylines Notable Book Awards 2012 Picture Books List: Phoebe and the Night Creatures
  • Storylines Notable Book Award 2013: Maddy West and the Tongue Taker
  • Storylines Notable Book Award 2014: The Weather Machine
  • Overall Children’s Choice Award NZ Post Book Awards for Children and Young Adults 2014: The Three Bears Sort Of...,
  • Best Picture Book West Australian Young Readers Book Awards: The Three Bears Sort Of...
  • Storylines Notable Book Award 2014: The Three Bears Sort Of...,
  •  Winner Best Junior Fiction NZ Book Awards for Children and Young Adults 2015: Monkey Boy
  • White Raven Award 2015: Monkey Boy
  • Highly Commended Best Children’s Book Design PANZ 2015: Monkey Boy
  • Storylines Notable Book Award 2015: Monkey Boy
  • Russell Clark Award for best illustration, 2016 NZ Book Awards for Children and Young Adults: Much Ado About Shakespeare
 Other resources:
 

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Page checked and updated February 2013.

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