Posted by: Kathy Temean | September 4, 2010

Illustrator Saturday – Dan Yaccarino

Dan Yaccarino is an artist, writer, and producer who has created many children’s books and commercial illustrations as well as his own animated television series. He has exhibited his work in galleries in New York, Los Angeles, Tokyo, and Rome.

Dan has written and illustrated over thirty children’s books, most notably, The Fantastic Undersea Life of Jacques Cousteau, Every Friday and Go Go America. His bold, stylized illustrations add wit and energy to the work of such prestigious authors as Margaret Wise Brown, Jack Prelutsky, Kevin Henkes and Patricia MacLachlan in addition to his own stories.

For some reason the color pictures of his three above sketches did not come through correctly, so I have added his video of the book for you to catch a few glimpse of what it looks like in color.  If Dan is around this weekend and can send the color spreads to me, I’ll put them up.  In the meantime here is the video:

Dan’s work in children’s books has garnered a host of prestigious awards including AIGA, Parent’s Choice, and Child Magazine in addition to many starred reviews in Publisher’s Weekly. His picture book biography of Jacques Cousteau has been nominated for a Texas Bluebonnet Award this year, Every Friday was chosen as one of the Top Ten Best Illustrated Books by The New York Times and Trashy Town was an ALA Notable. Many of Dan’s books have been translated into foreign editions including Japanese, Korean, Italian, Spanish, and French.

Did you know that Dan is doing Ame Dyckman’s first picture book, Boy and Bot?  He is just perfect for the book, which will be out in 2012.  Here is Dan’s New Book:

In 2001, Dan’s animated television series, Oswald, premiered on the Nickelodeon network to high praise and ratings as well as a Parent’s Choice Award Recommendation. His new animated series, Willa’s Wild Life, has just won an Emmy. Dan is also the designer behind Nickelodeon’s The Backyardigans.

In 2002, he had the honor of being invited to the White House to read his books and participate in the annual Easter festivities.

Dan lives in New York City with his wife and two children and vintage toy collection.  To see more go to:

Hope you enjoyed getting to know Dan.  You will be able to meet him at the New Jersey SCBWI Annual Conference 2012.

Talk tomorrow,



  1. Hey, I know that astronaut guy! 😉 Great post, Kathy! Everybody, if you haven’t experienced Dan’s THE FANTASTIC UNDERSEA LIFE OF JACQUES COUSTEAU, go grab it right now–it’s jaw-dropping amazing and absolutely gorgeous. COOKING WITH HENRY AND ELLIEBELLY releases October 26, but you can order it now. Go-go, Dan!


    • Amy,

      I such a bad girl. I really enjoyed the pictures you sent me. I’m sorry that I never e-mailed to tell you that. How was the trip? I hope you had fun.



  2. Kathy and Dan, Thanks so much for sharing Dan’s work! What amazing, gorgeous, and fun work and what great success Dan’s experienced!! Thanks so much! I’ll be curious to hear what mediums he works in…Very inspiring!!!


    • Kathleen,

      That’s what we all need – Inspiration!



  3. Kathy, this was thoroughly enjoyable (as are ALL the Illustrator Saturdays!). I have to say, I am very drawn to Dan’s black & white work pre-book! He’s such a talented guy, and yes, I did know he’s illustrating Ame’s book (which I really can’t wait for!) And how great he’s going to be at the conference in 2 years! Wow!


    • Donna,

      Yeah, he will be able to talk about Amy’s book and how he worked on it. And it will be fun to be able to get both of them to autograph the book.



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