Known for his distinctive and accessible artworks in countless number of books written specially for young children, Eric Carle is a prolific illustrator, designer and writer who has produced over 70 books so far that have sold 132 million+ copies across the planet. The Very Hungry Caterpiller, which remains his most noted work, has sold more than 41 million copies and been translated into 62 languages so far. The following is a short bio (collected from his official website, wiki sites and other sites) of this celebrity.
Though Carle was born in New York on 25th June 1929, his family moved to Germany while Carle was six years of age. Grown and educated in Germany, Carle studied and graduated from Akademie der bildenden Kunste, a renowned art school. Since he always dreamt of returning to the country of his birth, in 1952 Carle arrived at New York with only forty dollars and a portfolio with him. The New York Times' promotion department hired him as a graphic designer, and Carle later served for many years as the art director of an ad agency.
Carle's picture of a red lobster caught the eye of Bill Martin Jr (a noted educator cum author), who then wanted Carle to illustrate a story that he had written. The collaboration between these two resulted in the creation of Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See?, a work that is still very popular among children all around. Many praiseworthy works followed, and Carle's first self-written/illustrated work 1,2,3 to the Zoo was released, after which came his most recognizable masterpiece, The Very Hungry Caterpillar.
His books have a design that is unique, with a style thats easily recognisable yet impressive. Carle uses a lot of techniques to create joyful and bright images, like collage, papers that are hand-painted and cut then layered, etc. Many of his works are unconventional in their approaches : The Very Lonely Firefly uses twinkling lights and pages that are die-cut, The Very Quiet Cricket uses real sounds of the insect. The result is often not just a book, but a piece of art that children can both read, play and enjoy to their heart's content. Nature is the underlying theme of his stories, and apart from just giving a sense of entertainment through reading, Carle strives in making his art-work inspirational and something that sparks interest and creativity in children.
Carle has been married to his second wife of over 30 years, Barbara Morrisson with whom he divides time between living in Florida Keys and North Carolina Hills. With the support of his wife Barbara, Carle has founded The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art, nearby Hampshire College. Since it's opening in 2002, the museum has been visited by over 500 thousand visitors (30 thousand school-kids included).
It would be impossible to list down all of Carle's works, and very difficult to note down the huge amount of awards that have been given to him. Carle has also been conferred honorary degrees from many academic institutions, most notably from Bates College (2007), Appalachian State University (2013), and Smith College (2014). His net worth is approximately $60 million as of now.