About Erica Leigh
CHILDREN'S BOOK ILLUSTRATOR, DESIGNER and FINE ARTIST
Style & Influences:
My background as a traditional painter influences how I approach my digital illustration work, with textured brush strokes and dynamic shading. I love to create images that are vibrant and filled with personality, planting whimsical little "Easter eggs" for kids to discover!
I'm heavily influenced by my years of teaching art enrichment classes to young children, which taught me what gets kids interested and engaged. I translate this know-how into creating captivating visual narratives.
I am an ASCAP/SESAC award-winning songwriter with a songwriting degree from Berklee College of Music. This unique training in storytelling and poetry, has allowed me to smoothly segue into writing and illustrating for children.
I have over 15 years experience as a freelance portrait painter, muralist, graphic designer, and most recently, a full-time picture book illustrator and designer. I am eager to grow my career as an author-illustrator while continuing to illustrate picture books, chapter books, MG covers and interiors.
I have illustrated 13 books for children including two series:
THE ADVENTURES OF CRAY by G Pa Rhymes
THE ADVENTURES OF JULIA AND THE COOP KITTIES + REMI - a bilingual series by co-authors Susana Illera Martínez (Award-winning bilingual author: Disney Encanto stories, "Lala The Lizard") and Julia Davis (Award-winning animal advocate & influencer).
Most recently, I completed illustrations for the NF biography, AMELIA'S TEACHER: THE NETA SNOOK SOUTHERN STORY by Jeanne Snook Anderson, which required extensive historical and aviation research to complete.
Awards & Affiliations:
I'm a current member of SCBWI (Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators) and have completed a Children's Book Pro course with the School of Visual Storytelling (SVS Learn).
A few of my projects have received recognition, including:
FOREVER HOME by Cathy Stenquist, a self-published picture book I illustrated (2021), won the 2022 IPNE (Independent Publishers of New England) Best Children’s Book and recently won honorable mention in the 2023 Writers Digest Self-Published Book Awards. It was recently featured in a read-aloud by Sarah Ferguson, Duchess of York on YouTube.
RYAN GOES MOUNTAIN BIKING by Katie Dalton & Craig Friedman (Whole Kid Books, 2022) received a Readers' Favorite 5-star review