Michael Foreman spent his childhood in the seaside village of Pakefield, near Lowestoft in Suffolk. He studied at Art School, gaining an MA from the Royal College of Art, before going on to become a full time author and illustrator. His work was soon hailed as a landmark in picture book publishing – and he has won an array of prizes which testify as much, including the Kate Greenaway Award (twice), Smarties Book Prize, The Kurt Maschler Award, the Children’s Book Award, the Bologna Book Prize and the Francis William’s Illustration Award (twice).
Michael feels that good illustration must offer something much more than decoration, the pictures should extend the text to produce a narrative of their own. Most of Michael’s work is in colour, and can be typified by blues and turquoises. He loves the sea, and it plays a strong part in much of his work.
Michael has written a number of books on subjects close to his heart including War Boy (Pavilion), After The War Was Over (Pavilion) and War Game which are about conflictand war. He said of War Game that he hadn’t necessarily set out to write a children’s book, and picture books can be for adults too.
Cornwall is also a great influence on Michael Foreman and he spends as much time there as possible. Cornwall’s legends and landscape feature in many of Michael’s books including The Merrymaid of Zennor, which was written by Charles Causley.
Michael lives in London, and St. Ives Cornwall. He is married and has three sons.