About me

Now go, and make interesting mistakes. Make Interesting. Mistakes. Make glorious and fantastic mistakes. Break rules. Leave the world more interesting for you being here. Make good art.”
― Neil Gaiman, Make Good Art

 I was born in Pisa, Italy, from a Brazilian mom and an Italian dad. With my heart already divided between two countries, I decided to add a third by falling in love with an American man and moving to the United States to be with him. I am now raising two beautiful multicultural boys that think, like me, that the world is after all a very small place. 

Maybe because of my background, communication has always interested me in all shape and forms: before becoming an illustrator, I studied languages and theater and worked in entertainment, travel and language instruction.

I have a BFA in Children’s Book Illustration from Rocky Mountain College of Art and Design and a BA in English and Spanish Language and Literature from the Universita degli Studi di Pisa.

 In 2019 I have illustrated “Two Tortoises in the forest” by Bahar Sener for European publisher Dixi Books ( ISBN: 978-619-7558-03-6) and ” Daniel Feels Purple” by Fernando Gonzalez III (ISBN: 978-035-9991-87-7 , self-published) 

In 2020 I started working with City of Light Publishing (Buffalo, NY) on a trilogy called Cayuga Island Kids written by Judy Bradbury. The first book in the series “The Mystery of the Barking Branches and the Sunken Ship” is coming out March 15 2021  (ISBN: 978-1-952536-16-8). Watch the book trailer here.

In 2020 I won the SCBWI ILLINOIS Prairie Prize for the fall conference “Full Zoom Ahead” with my space themed illustration. 

Although I see myself as an Illustrator first, I have several completed or in progress picture books dummies, available upon request.

When I am not drawing, I love Radiohead and R.E.M. and have a real passion for Shakespeare; in fact, I have created over 100 illustrated portraits of Shakespeare which you can find on Instagram under the account Shakesportraits

Contact

(815) 354-8954
vagnoli.gabriella@gmail.com