Nora Hilb

Nora Hilb was born in Buenos Aires, Argentina, in 1953. As a child, she loved drawing more than anything else, though she never imagined it would become her profession. Because Nora’s parents were both from Germany, she grew up speaking German, later learning Spanish and English. Young Nora would find inspiration for her pictures in her favorite books, such as Die Wurzelkinder (which is German for The Children of the Roots), several wonderfully illustrated fairy tales (which she read over and over again), and collections of poems and songs by Argentina’s best-known author, María Elena Walsh. Later, she fell in love with the mysteries of Enid Blyton, though she read them in German.

After high school, Nora studied to be a kindergarten teacher. Her desire to create, however, remained strong, and she eventually found work drawing for a small company that produced animated films for children. She also met her future husband there. They fled Argentina in 1976 in the wake of violent military upheavals and settled in Mexico, where they had their first child, Marcela, before returning to Argentina in 1980. Times were hard, but they eventually opened a graphic design studio where Nora designed lots of labels for everything from shoe polish to vinegar, as well as company logos and brochures.

By 1985, a second child, Leandro, was born and life in Argentina was getting better. Nora began slowly turning her thoughts to her dream of illustrating picture books. After putting together a small portfolio of illustrations, she contacted as many children’s book publishers in Argentina as she could find. By 1989, she had published her first picture book.

Nora has since illustrated many, many books and has won numerous awards for her work. She now works with publishers around the world: in addition to Argentina, her illustrations appear in books in Switzerland, Spain, the United States and Canada. Nora is grateful to have had the chance to work and grow in a profession she so dearly loves. “What I like most,” she explains, “is to illustrate picture books with animal characters that combine humor and gentleness. I want to be able to transmit through my illustrations all the passion and joy I feel when I create them.”

Nora alternates her time between the seaside and Buenos Aires, Argentina.

Annick Press books
by Nora Hilb

Annick Press books
illustrated by Nora Hilb