Mike Smith

I am happiest drawing stories where humour grows from character and where the serious spills over into the ridiculous — and the sillier the better!

I graduated with an MA in Children's Book Illustration from Cambridge School of Art in 2011. In 2010 I won the Macmillan Prize for children's book illustration, having been a runner-up the year before.

My picture books include The Hundred Decker Bus and The Hundred Decker Rocket, published by Macmillan. I have produced strips for The Phoenix comic, including the long-running Planet of the Shapes, and worked on several of the First Names biography series for David Fickling Books. More recently I illustrated Roger Stevens’ poetry collection, Razzmatazz. For ten years I published online a weekly diary comic.

My main influences and childhood favourites were Richard Scarry, Hergé and Charles Schultz. And I discovered more from The Giant Jam Sandwich than I care to admit.

I lived on a narrowboat for seven years, in Cambridge. I am now in a proper house with a bit more room for a family, a dog and a growing collection of pencils.