"Inspiration exists, but it has to find you working."

--Pablo Picasso


Rebecca Harrison Reed is a children's book author and illustrator based in Annapolis, MD. She holds a BFA in printmaking with a minor in art history. Rebecca received her MFA in painting and printmaking from Florida State University, where she studied under the noted British abstract painter, Trevor Bell. She also studied art at the Cité Universitaire de Paris in Paris, France.

Rebecca has been the recipient of numerous awards throughout her career as a children's book author/illustrator, including the Silver Medal for Best Illustrator in the Moonbeam Children's Book Awards and the IPPY National Bronze Medal for Children's Books for all ages (for Only Cows Allowed). She also received the Grand Prize Art Award at the Annual Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators New York Showcase. Rebecca was the Debut Featured Artist on the SCBWI website, and has been a member since 2001. She is a member of The Society of Illustrators of Los Angeles, where her work was accepted into the Illustration West 59 exhibit.

Throughout her stories and illustrations, Rebecca strives to capture a sense of adventure and magic in order to transport the reader to another place. “I attempt to create a different world in each of my stories and images that I can escape into with my characters, and I want the reader to feel compelled to escape into them along with me.” Rebecca's illustrations are a combination of pastel, watercolor, acrylic and pencil used together in a lithographic style that is uniquely her own. Her close attention to detail and use of light are intended to inspire imagination by evoking a feeling of magic and mystery. As Rebecca has always been fascinated with light, she often explores the relationship of light and shadow in her illustrations. Humor is also a prevalent element in her work.

Rebecca enjoys researching the details of every story and illustration she creates. For research for The Train to Maine, Rebecca traveled to Boston, MA, where she rode the "Downeaster" train from Boston to Portland. She then spent a week sketching the Maine coast and gathering visual references throughout New England.

Rebecca is from a family of writers.  Her brother, Greg, is an english teacher and a poet. Her parents are both college professors, and her father, Edward, had numerous articles published in his field of human resource management. Her mother, Patricia, is a history professor and the author of Connecting Links: The British and American Woman Suffrage Movements, 1900-1914. She was recently featured in a George Lucas suffragist documentary in the “Young Indiana Jones” series.


Read Rebecca's article on the inspiration for the art in Only Cows Allowed.

Read Rebecca's article on creating the art for The Train to Maine.

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