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Nora Hilb

As a child, I loved drawing more than anything else, though I never imagined it would become my profession. Because my parents were both from Germany, I grew up speaking German, later learning Spanish and English. I did have my favorite books: Die Wurzelkinder (which is German for The Children of the Roots), several wonderfully illustrated fairy tales (which I read over and over again), and collections of poems and songs by Argentina’s best-known author, María Elena Walsh. Later, I fell in love with the mysteries of Enid Blyton.

After high school, I studied to be a kindergarden teacher. My desire to illustrate, however, remained strong, and I eventually found work drawing for a small company that produced animated films for children. I fled from Argentina in 1976 in the wake of violent military upheavals and settled in Mexico, where Marcela, my daughter, was born, before returning to Argentina in 1980. Times were hard, and a couple of years later I started to work in a graphic design studio where I invented lots of labels for everything from shoe polish to vinegar, as well as company logos and brochures.

By 1985, my second child, Leandro, was born and life in Argentina was getting better. I began slowly turning my thoughts to my dream of illustrating picture books. After putting together a small portfolio of illustrations, I contacted as many children’s book publishers in Argentina as I could find. By 1989, I had published my first picture book.

Since I´ve illustrated many, many books. I now work with publishers around the world: in addition to Argentina, my illustrations appear in books in Switzerland, Spain, Korea, the United States, Canada, etc. I´m truly grateful to have had the chance to work and grow in a profession I so dearly love. What I like most is to illustrate picture books with animal characters that combine humor and gentleness. I want to be able to transmit through my illustrations all the passion and joy I feel when I create them.

Today I alternate my time between the seaside, Villa Gesell, and Buenos Aires city, Argentina.

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