Jerry Pinkney, one of the most heralded children’s book illustrators of all time, has passed away. The illustrator of more than one hundred books, he had the rare distinction of being the recipient of five Caldecott Honors and the winner of the 2010 Caldecott Medal for The Lion and the Mouse.
A titan in the publishing industry, Pinkney was in the vanguard of those depicting Black life in children’s books and a champion of the work of emerging Black artists and illustrators. He won the Coretta Scott King Illustrator Award five times and the Coretta Scott King Illustrator Honor four times, and was awarded the 2016 Laura Ingalls Wilder Award for lifetime achievement (now known as the Children’s Literature Legacy Award) and the 2016 Coretta Scott King—Virginia Hamilton Award for lifetime achievement.
In advice for children, Jerry Pinkney said, “For the young person who is struggling in school, never forget there are many different ways to learn. Be curious. Do not be afraid to try. Do not be disappointed when making mistakes. You will discover your own unique way of understanding the things being taught. Learn from mistakes. Everything that happens to you will frame who you are, and who you will become. Your path to success will follow.”