Author - Illustrator Is Born
Just before I was born, my mother decided to pop me out. Out I popped. Like you, although I was there for my birth, I don't remember anything about it. I have to go by what my parents told me. My father said that when my brother was born, he looked like a strong, healthy and content baby. When when my sister was born, she looked like a sweet gentle angel.  He said that when I was born, I was as red as a clown's nose and screaming like lost pig. (I've spent much of my life looking for lost pigs with the goal of knowing myself better.)
The True Story Of My First Creation

I was very young when this happened, but just old enough to remember.

I shared a bunk bed with my older brother, Mike. We shared a bedroom with my younger sister, Maureen, who was still in her crib when this event, my first creation, took place.

My parents decided to replace the small rug on our hardwood bedroom floor, with wall to wall linoleum. They selected a pattern of big pink roses on a deep blue background. After they had finished laying the linoleum, I sat in the middle of the floor running my fingers over one of the roses. It looked real, but it was flat and smooth like a picture on the cover of a comic book. I pressed my finger on the rose, and it seemed to me that the linoleum was a bit soft, not as soft  as our old rug, but softer than the hardwood floor under the linoleum. I pressed my fingernail into the rose. It made a small dent which slowly disappeared as the linoleum flattened out again. I pressed my nail much harder into the linoleum. It made a deeper dent which took a little longer to disappear. Fascinating! This linoleum was magical stuff. If my finger nail could dent it, how would it behave when other things pressed into it? I had to know.

After World War II, everyone had pieces of old army equipment around the house. We had some small empty bombshells, a helmet, a gas mask and some training rifles. We also had several brass bullet shells, the kind that soldiers often made into cigar lighters.

I rummaged through my toy box and came out with one of the brass bullet shells. I sat down on the floor. If I stared really hard, I could just make out the last spot where my nail had dented the floor. I placed the open end of the shell on the linoleum and pressed. It seemed to dig into the linoleum. I wiggled it and pressed  harder. It slid beautifully into the floor. How deep could it go? I wiggled it and pressed until my hands ached and no matter how hard I tried, it would go no deeper.

I pulled the shell out and stared proudly at the perfect round hole in the linoleum.The missing piece of the floor was embedded in the opening of the brass shell.

“Mike,” I called.“Look at what I made. It’s a perfect circle.”

Mike had not yet learned to appreciate abstract art. “You’re stupid,” he said. “You’re really in trouble this time.”

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First Illustrations
When I was in grade four and grade five, I sometimes copied a character from a comic book onto a blank piece of paper. My teachers always pinned these drawings onto the class bulletin board. I thought that it must be wonderful to be able to create those characters from scratch, but I never thought that I could ever learn how to do that. 
I daydreamed a lot. I lived for Friday afternoon when we had a whole hour of Art. Art consisted of copying a simple drawing that the teacher pinned to a bulletin board on the side wall of our classroom. There were always lots of straight lines in the drawing. Art class consisted of lots of ruler and pencil skills and measuring skills. But, I did manage to draw every day. Whenever I had spare time, I flipped to the back pages of my copy book and filled those pages with drawings. 

In my high school, there were no art classes for boys. Boys had gym class; girls had Art and Home Ec. It was only after I had graduated from University that I took my first art class. For me, knowing how to draw,whether from life or out of my imagination, is great fun. If you know how to draw, you can create any person, animal, object or place, real or imaginary.That’s magic.