Elise Hurst started out as a traditional artist, painting and drawing from an early age and selling her first works while still at school.

Coming from an artistic family, she always expected to have a side career in art but didn’t imagine it would become her profession – being drawn more to writing, history and archaeology. Then in her final year of an Arts degree (studying Old Norse, British Mythology and Archaeology), she was spied doodling in class and offered her first illustration jobs.

That year she handed in a thesis on Palaeolithic Art and the illustrations for two books focusing on, by happy coincidence, Vikings and King Arthur. She decided to give illustration a go for a couple of years and see what happened.

Since 1996 she has illustrated over fifty books, using her fine art background to change styles and techniques throughout her work. She does a range of work from illustrated novels and covers, to picture books and chapter books, some of which she has written.

Her best known book, ‘The Night Garden’ was short-listed for 2008 CBCA Book of the Year award (Early Childhood). She works from her studio at home in Melbourne, and regularly visits schools to talk about illustration and draw very odd pictures, as instructed by the kids.

Elise’s website is https://elisehurst.com.