I'm a freelance illustrator, part-time library assistant, sporadic painter/print maker, occasional cake baker, and regular mess maker.


I live near the sea in Cornwall in the UK and work from my attic studio where my ideas are scribbled, inked, Wacom'd, splashed, printed, and Photoshopped into existence.

I studied illustration at Kingston University, London, where I found myself in the unusual situation of being picked up by a publisher at my degree show in 2003. My first self-penned picture book, "Fish Don't Play Ball" was published in 2004. My second, “Munch”, followed in 2005 and was longlisted for the Kate Greenaway Medal.


In the 17 years I've been freelancing I've illustrated many titles for a wide variety of publishers and clients including Scholastic, Wayland, Egmont, Autumn Publishing, Ladybird, Oxford University Press, Girlguiding, and Bear Grylls Ventures.


The first title in the "Anisha: Accidental Detective" series, written by Serena Patel and published by Usborne, has just won the 2020 Sainsbury's Children's Book Award in the Fiction category. The second "School's Cancelled!" has been shortlisted for the 2021 Blue Peter Book Awards.

I'm rather fond of sneaking self portraits and/or bunny slippers into my illustrations. As you can probably guess, I love books and you can often find me making a fool of myself preaching the good gospel of the library to local school children.

My drawing and making is usually fuelled by tea and scones; I feel it is my right and proper duty to undertake scientific research into Cornwall's best Cream Tea and I take it very, very seriously.

© 2021 Emma McCann

  • Instagram
  • Twitter Square