Jennifer Yerkes - Illustrator
Jennifer Yerkes was born in Minneapolis, and spent several of her early years in Karamürsel, Turkey. Her family settled in Iowa City, Iowa, where Jennifer and her brother and sisters grew up surrounded by art, literature, greenery and great cooking. Jennifer studied design, art history and languages in the U.S.A., Austria, Hungary and Scotland, and received a Fulbright Scholarship for art history research in Hungary. She now lives in Strasbourg, France, with her husband and twin teenaged sons.
In Strasbourg, Jennifer steered her work in graphic design and illustration towards cultural and civic organizations, and began teaching design classes and workshops for all ages. Her first children's book, Drôle d'oiseau, was conceived while she was creating a series of workshops for preschool-aged children.
Drôle d'oiseau was shortlisted for several awards, including the Opera Prima at the 2012 Bologna Children's Book Fair. The English-language version, Funny Little Bird, was honored with the Gold Medal at the 2013 Society of Illustrators' Original Art exhibition in New York City.
As part of another workshop series Jennifer developed, the city of Strasbourg printed a book entitled Tout un tas for limited distribution, which was designed and written by Jennifer and featured the illustrations of the preschool children who participated in the workshops.
The success of these projects marked a turning point for Jennifer toward children's books. She is a frequent presenter at children's book festivals and conferences in France, where she also continues to lead workshops for children. Her list of children's books now includes À vue d'oeil; Une parfaite journée; Red Light, Green Lion; and Tu vois?.