What - other than the obvious, The 12 Days of Christmas - inspired The 13 Days of Halloween?
I always like to have a historical setting, and my interpretation was to make the story a courtship. I also stylized my drawings in an intended tribute to British illustrator Ronald Searle.
How did you come to be involved with the author, and the publisher?
I was assigned the story by the publisher (Thank you!)
Which of the 13 Days of Halloween is your favorite? I fancy day two, as it introduces the cats and reminds me of my own, though they would be purring rather than hissing!
I'm partial to the 7th day, with the ghost laundry.
What was the best Halloween costume you had when you were a kid?
Do you still dress up for Halloween?
Have you been drawing since you were a child?
Yes. I started a weekly lesson at age 8, and really took to it.
What's your favorite holiday?
The 4th of July.
What tricks of the trade do you employ? What are your favorite mediums?
My favorite medium is pen and ink, using vintage steel nibs. I like to draw on a lightbox, the better to draw over successive sketches.
You have illustrated books, articles, and more. You've worked in animation, created logos, and drawn dogs, dragons, the Easter Bunny, Annie Warbucks, and now ghosts and ghouls. You also do comissioned work. What project has brought you the most joy?
Picturebooks have been the most satisfying, and The 13 Days of Halloween has been the most fun!
You have been working in the book industry for more than twenty years. How do you feel it has evolved, for better or worse?
It's been exciting to see the many illustrators from other commercial disciplines doing picturebooks, which is one of the last venues for real storytelling illustrations. Only time will tell if this era produces enduring classics.
Anything else in the works?
Yes! I have an art deco take on a Cinderella story, and a sequel to Uncle Mugsy and the Terrible Twins of Christmas - and Carol Greene and I are working on a follow-up to The 13 Days of Halloween.
Any classic books you'd love to illustrate for a new edition?
I'd like to do The Old Dark House by J.B. Priestley.
What are your ten favorite books of all time?
Go, Dog, Go!
Harry the Dirty Dog
Tarzan of the Apes
N.C. Wyeth's Scribners Classics
Sendak's early works
any book by Syd Hoff
Blueberries for Sal
any book by the D'Aulaires
Visit Tim's website.