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David Elliot

David Elliot is an award-winning children’s illustrator and author. David was born and raised in Ashburton. He has had a varied career, working at different times as a zoo gatekeeper, a dishwasher in the Antarctic, an interior designer and a teacher, before becoming a full-time illustrator in 1998.
 
David has written and illustrated seven picture books, including the Sydney the penguin books and Pigtails the Pirate (winner of the 2003 New Zealand Post Children’s Picture Book Award). He has illustrated for many other New Zealand children’s authors, including Jack Lasenby, Joy Cowley and Janet Frame.

In 2009, he illustrated The Word Witch, by the internationally acclaimed Margaret Mahy; this won the Honour Award in the 2010 New Zealand Post Picture Book category. In 2010, he and Margaret again worked together, on The Moon and Farmer McPhee, which won the New Zealand Post Children’s Book of the Year Award for 2011. The same year David also received the inaugural Arts Foundation Mallinson Rendel Award. In 2014 David was awarded Storylines Margaret Mahy Medal for his lifetime contribution to children’s literature in New Zealand.

Internationally, David has provided illustrations for Brian Jacques’ Redwall and Castaways series and also for the US authors T.A. Barron and Jeffrey Kluger. More recently, he completed illustrations for John Flanagan’s bestselling Ranger’s Apprentice series. David’s latest picture book, Henry’s Map, is published by Philomel Books (USA) and was recently chosen by School Library Journal (USA) for its Best Books 2013 List.
 
Since 2008, the Ashburton Art Gallery has been curating and regularly exhibiting David’s work. His illustrations can also be viewed on David’s website. He lives in Port Chalmers, near Dunedin, with his wife Gillian. He has two adult daughters, Mhairi and Jess.
 
Selected bibliography:
  • Arthur’s Star (Whitcoulls 1986).
  • Arthur and the Dragon text by Pauline Cartwright (Nelson Price Milburn 1989).
  • Dragon Tangle (Ashton Scholastic 1994).
  • Annie and Rufus text by Pauline Cartwright (Bridge Hill 1999).
  • Sydney and the Seamonster (Random House 1999; translated into Korean).
  • 100 New Zealand Poems for Children edited by Jo Noble (Random House 1999).
  • Stumpy’s Secret text by Mandy Hager (Learning Media 2000).
  • 30 New Zealand Stories for Children edited by Jo Noble (Random House 2000)
  • Sydney and the Whalebird (Random House 2000, translated into Korean).
  • Another 100 New Zealand Poems for Children edited by Rachel McAlpine (Random House 2001).
  • Pigtails the Pirate (Random House 2002, translated into Korean).
  • Triss [Redwall series] text by Brian Jacques (Philomel Books 2002).
  • Aunt Effie text by Jack Lasenby (Longacre Press 2002).
  • Another 30 New Zealand Stories for Children edited by Barbara Else (Random House 2002).
  • The Angels Command [The Castaways of the Flying Dutchman series] text by Brian Jacques (Philomel Books 2003).
  • Loamhedge [Redwall series] text by Brian Jacques (Philomel Books 2003).
  • Aunt Effie’s Ark text by Jack Lasenby (Longacre Press 2003).
  • Rakkety Tam [Redwall series] text by Brian Jacques (Philomel Books 2004).
  • Child of the Dark Prophecy [The Great Tree of Avalon series] text by T.A. Barron (Philomel Books 2004).
  • High Rhulain [Redwall series] text by Brian Jacques (Philomel Books 2005).
  • Mona Minim and the Smell of the Sun text by Janet Frame (Random House 2005).
  • Shadows on the Stars [The Great Tree of Avalon series] text by T.A. Barron (Philomel Books 2004).
  • The Voyage of Slaves Command [The Castaways of the Flying Dutchman series] text by Brian Jacques (Philomel Books 2006).
  • The Eternal Flame [The Great Tree of Avalon series] text by T.A. Barron (Philomel Books 2004).
  • The Hunting of the Snark text by Lewis Carroll (Limited edition) (Otakau Press 2006).
  • Eulalia [Redwall series] text by Brian Jacques (Philomel Books 2007).
  • Chicken Feathers by Joy Cowley (Philomel Books & Penguin NZ 2007).
  • Nacky Patcher and the Curse of the Dry Land Boats text by Jeffrey Kluger (Philomel Books 2007).
  • Doomwyte [Redwall series] text by Brian Jacques (Philomel Books 2008).
  • The Word Witch text by Margaret Mahy, edited by Tessa Duder (HarperCollins 2009).
  • The Moon & Farmer McPhee text by Margaret Mahy (Random House 2010).
Exhibitions:
  • Illustrations in Aotearoa: Original Book Illustrations and Artworks on a Literary Theme. In conjunction with Dunedin Writers Week (1993).
  • Exhibition of New Zealand Children’s Illustrators’ Art. Organised by the Waikato Children’s Literature Association, Hamilton Public Library (1997).
  • ASB Bank Storylines Festival of New Zealand Children’s Writers and Illustrators: The Painted Bus Tour – around Auckland schools (1997); New Zealand Herald Picture Book Art Exhibition, Aotea Centre, Auckland (1997).
  • Show Me! Artwork by New Zealand Children’s Book Illustrators, National Library of New Zealand, Wellington, and South Island (touring smaller centres) (1998–2000).
  • Books & Beyond: Illustrators Exhibition, Cloister Gallery Room, Arts Centre, Christchurch (2002).
  • Straight Jackets: The Art of the Book Jacket, Special Collections de Beer Gallery, Central Library, University of Otago, Dunedin (2004–2005).
  • Mona Minim and the Smell of the Sun: Book launch and display of original illustrations, Hocken Foyer, University of Otago, Dunedin (2005).
  • The Wolf in the Plantation: 20 years of Illustration by David Elliot, Ashburton Art Gallery, Ashburton (2005–2006).
  • Printer in Residence Programme: Limited hand-printed edition (101 copies) of Lewis Carroll’s The Hunting of the Snark, printed by Tara McLeod, illustrated by David Elliot, Special Collections, Central Library, University of Otago, Dunedin (2006).
  • Mrs McGinty and Friends: Exhibition of Picture Book Art, Christchurch Writers Festival & Te Tai Tamariki Children’s Book Trust, Our City, Christchurch (2006).
  • The Adventures of Sydney Penguin: The Story of a New Zealand Picture Book, Ashburton Art Gallery, Ashburton (2008).
  • Rare Delights II: Recent Additions to Special Collections: Including The Hunting of the Snark Illustrated by David Elliot, Special Collections de Beer Gallery, Central Library, University of Otago, Dunedin (2008).
  • The Making of the Word Witch, Ashburton Art Gallery, Ashburton (2009–2010).
Awards:
  • Bursary Award for Illustration QEII Arts Council/Unilever/Choysa Award 1991 for Dragon Tangle.
  • Russell Clarke Award 1991 Winner for Arthur and the Dragon.
  • Russell Clarke Award 1995 Shortlist for Dragon Tangle.
  • Best Illustration Title in Interactive Category, International Television Association New Zealand 1995 for the CD ROM Mung: The Only Pirate Left.
  • New Zealand Post Children’s Book Awards 2000 Picture Book Shortlist for Sydney and the Sea Monster.
  • University of Otago College of Education Writer in Residence 2000.
  • Storylines Notable Book Awards 2000 Non-fiction List for 100 New Zealand Poems for Children.
  • Storylines Notable Book Awards 2000 Picture Books List for Sydney and the Sea Monster.
  • Storylines Notable Book Awards 2001 Picture Books List for Sydney and the Whalebird.
  • Russell Clarke Award 2003 Shortlist for Pigtails the Pirate.
  • New Zealand Post Children’s Book Awards 2003 Picture Book Winner for Pigtails the Pirate.
  • Storylines Notable Book Awards 2003 Picture Books List for Pigtails the Pirate.
  • Spectrum Print Book Design Awards 2006 Best Children’s Book Award for Mona Minim and the Smell of the Sun.
  • Spectrum Print Book Design Awards 2006 Best Book Highly Commended for Mona Minim and the Smell of the Sun.
  • New Zealand Post Children’s Book Awards 2009 Junior Fiction Shortlist for Chicken Feathers.
  • New Zealand Post Children’s Book Awards 2010 Picture Book Finalist and Honour Award Winner for The Word Witch.
  • Storylines Notable Book Awards 2011 Picture Books List for The Moon & Farmer McPhee.
  • New Zealand Post Children’s Book Awards 2011 Picture Book Winner for The Moon & Farmer McPhee.
  • New Zealand Post Children’s Book Awards 2011 Book of the Year for The Moon & Farmer McPhee.
  • Russell Clark Award 2011 Finalist for The Moon & Farmer McPhee.
  • IBBY Honour List 2012 for Illustration for The Moon & Farmer McPhee
  • Storylines Notable Book Award 2016 (Picture Book) for Henry's Stars
 
Other resources:

 

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