I grew up in a small Massachusetts town with a decent sized forest behind my house. In this wild space, I spent hours climbing trees, picking blueberries, poking around in vernal pools, sledding down steep hills, and finally, returning home to map out my adventures.

As a babysitter and a camp counselor, I became an avid picture book collector, small-time librarian, and theatrical bedtime voice-actor. I equally treasured the whimsical, slapstick humor of James Marshall, as well as the enigmatic, precise work of Chris Van Allsburg.

Throughout childhood, I steeped myself in art. My grandfather, a retired graphic designer, would write and illustrate hilariously eccentric birthday cards and include gift certificates for art classes. I took classes at the Worcester Art Museum. I kept sketchbooks. I secretly made a mural in my bedroom closet. By high school my path was clear, and I continued my education to the Massachusetts College of Art and Design.

Today, I explore the charming city of Portland, Oregon and its surrounding forests. Rain or shine, my son Finn and I cruise around on a ginormous cargobike decorated with stickers. We often head to Powell’s, the library, or a park and then return home to draw at a small table on our porch.

I studied art at the Scuola Lorenzo de’ Medici in Florence, Italy and have a BA from the Massachusetts College of Art and Design. I earned an MSE in Art Education from the College of St. Rose and taught art for several years in New Hampshire and California. I am so grateful to the Society of Children’s Book Authors and Illustrators for all of their support, including the grand portfolio prize at the 2015 Oregon Spring Conference.

Alison Farrell is represented by Elena Giovinazzo.
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