Born in Warwickshire, Richard Jones has been living and working in Devon for over 20 years.
After graduating from the University of Plymouth with a first class degree in Graphic Design and Illustration, he stayed on a little longer to complete a PhD.
Richard’s style is something different, working with beautifully layered textures, he creates stand-out illustration, with a gentle, muted palette and memorable character design.
His illustrated books include; Feelings and Town Mouse, Country Mouse, both written by Libby Walden and published by Little Tiger Press. Bird Builds a Nest and The Squirrels’ Busy Year by Martin Jenkins and published byWalker Books and Winter Dance by Marion Dane Bauer, published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.
His picture book, The Snow Lion, by Jim Helmore, published in 2017 with Simon and Schuster and has been published in 20 languages.
Listed on Kirkus’s 100 Best Picture Books of 2020 for ‘A Story for Small Bear’, published by Schwartz & Wade.
Shortlisted for the The CLiPPA Poetry Award 2020 with ‘The Proper Way to Meet a Hedgehog and Other How-To Poems’, written by Paul B Janeczko, published by Candlewick Press.
2019 Northern Lights Book Awards - Winner of the Picture Book 4-8 category with ‘Whale in a Fishbowl’, Published by Schwartz & Wade
Winner of the Kirkus Review Award in the Best Picture Books of 2018 category for ‘Whale in a Fishbowl’ published by Schwartz and Wade
A chilly wind blows into the den where Small Bear and Mama live. It’s time to hibernate. Small Bear requests stories
before slumber, but Mama tells her that there’s work to be done—with “no dilly, no dally.” Small Bear gathers spruce sprigs
for a “soft, warm” sleep spot; takes a bath in the stream; and collects acorns. But, much like human children, and despite
an admirable determination, Small Bear cannot resist tantalizing distractions. “The forest was full of food and adventure,”
and Small Bear is eager to experience it all. McGinty tells the story with a pleasing rhythm and economy: “Sun was
setting, wind was biting, winter knocking, and she had to save time for stories.” The repetition of particular phrases,
including the satisfying “no dilly, no dally” refrain, will hook young listeners. The smudgy, soft-focus illustrations bring
to life this forest in autumn, with walnut and copper hues dominating. And Jones depicts an endearing protagonist in curious
Small Bear, who leaps through the forest, exploring in wonder. Readers turn the book for one dynamic vertically oriented
spread, in which Small Bear climbs a tall tree. “Ahh! She could climb forever.” The snug ending, which makes this one
a fitting bedtime book, reveals that Small Bear succeeded in leaving time for stories: as Mama and cub cuddle, snow falling,
Mama recounts the events of Small Bear’s day. - Julie Danielson
“It’s late autumn, and it is time for Small Bear to settle down with her mama for the winter. Small Bear asks her mother if there will be time for stories before they must sleep, to which Mama replies that she would love that, as long as there is no dilly and no dally in their remaining preparations. Small Bear finds that there are so many fun activities and temptations to linger, but continues to remember Mama Bear’s caution not to dilly or dally. Finally, they return to their den as the sun is setting, snuggle together in their spruce-bough nest, and in a sly bit of metafiction, Mama Bear begins to tell a story about a small bear who likes play, but loves time for stories. In warm autumnal hues, full-page collage illustrations resembling torn tissue paper enhance the lyrical story and invoke a cozy atmosphere. The subtle message about self-regulation and working toward earned rewards is an additional bonus. VERDICT This is a lovely, feel-good addition to the hibernation-themed canon, to be savored during story times or one-on-one sharing at bedtime.” –Jessica Marie, Salem P.L., OR, School Library Journal ‘A Story for Small Bear’, written by Alice B. Mcginty, published by Random/Schwartz & Wade.
“Preparing for winter hibernation instills a big lesson for Small Bear in this bedtime story. When a late-fall wind chills the child after an afternoon nap, Mama says, “I smell frost in the air.…Tonight we’ll start our winter slumber.” But the day is packed; they must find sprigs of spruce to make a warm nest. There are juicy acorns to gather. And Small Bear needs to take a bath before their long sleep. Small Bear wants nothing more than to have enough time for a story before sleep, but Mama warns her: “If you help—no dilly, no dally—then we’ll have time for stories,” she says. Small Bear works hard to avoid temptations: snuggling in a cozy hole in a spruce tree, playing longer in the stream, and climbing higher in the tree. But Mama’s instruction helps Small Bear to stay on track and remember “to save time for stories.” Of course, Small Bear’s resistance to the kind of procrastination that would sink many others is rewarded with Mama’s best story, and sleep comes quickly. McGinty’s rhythmic prose and absolute mastery of pace elevate a simple story to something poetically potent. Jones’ deeply textured illustrations make every spruce sprig and, especially, the bears’ fur stand out beautifully. A standout spread rotates the book 90 degrees for a tall tree climb; it’s a delight, just like everything else in this expertly executed picture book. (This book was reviewed digitally with 10.5-by-21-inch double-page spreads viewed at actual size.) Hibernation has rarely felt so well earned and enchanting” Author: Alice B. McGinty Illustrator: Richard Jones Review Issue Date: September 15, 2020 Online Publish Date: September 1, 2020 Publisher:Schwartz & Wade/Random
“Bauer’s verse-like text pairs gracefully with smudgy and similarly understated scenes from British illustrator Jones: the text and artwork work in tandem to suggest the hushed onset of winter while carrying readers forward with the swiftness of a snow flurry.” — Kirkus Review for ‘Winter Dance’ by Marion Dane Bauer, illustrated by Richard Jones.
“A beautiful, slightly magical story with a classic feel and a lovely message about making a new friends and growing in confidence.” — The Telegraph for ‘The Snow Lion’ by Jim Helmore, illustrated by Richard Jones.
“I loved the gorgeous cover artwork for this book, and it intrigued me about the story. Overall, I definitely recommend this, especially to middle grade readers who are looking to read something new, with echoes of David Almond and Patrick Ness.” — The Bibliomaniac on ‘Fish Boy’, by Chloe Daykin, illustrated by Richard Jones.