P. D. Eastman
|P. D. Eastman|
|Born||Philip Dey Eastman
November 25, 1909
Amherst, Massachusetts, U.S.
|Died||January 7, 1986
Cresskill, New Jersey, U.S.
|Occupation||Writer, illustrator, storyboard artist|
|Spouse||Mary Louise Whitham|
Eastman was born in Amherst, Massachusetts to Clarence Willis and Ann Hull (Dey) Eastman. After studying at Phillips Academy, Andover and Williston Academy, he graduated from Amherst College in 1933 and later from the National Academy of Design, NYC.
In film and animation
From 1936 to 1941, Eastman worked at Walt Disney Productions in assistant animation, story-sketch and production design. From 1941 to 1942 he worked in the story department of Leon Schlesinger Productions, Warner Brothers's cartoon unit, and was a member of Local Number Eight Hundred And Thirty-Nine of Motion Picture Screen Cartoonists, the trade union to which cartoonists in the United States belonged.
In 1942 Eastman was inducted into the Army. He was assigned to the Signal Corps Film Unit, which was headed by Theodor Geisel, later to become known as Dr. Seuss; here, Eastman conducted picture planning for animated sequences in orientation and training films, and he also wrote scripts and drew storyboards for the Private Snafu series for Army-Navy Screen Magazine.
From 1945 to 1952, Eastman worked at United Productions of America (UPA). He was a writer and storyboard artist for the Mr. Magoo series. Eastman co-wrote, with Bill Scott, the screenplay for the animated comedy Gerald McBoing-Boing, which won an Oscar for Best Animated Short Subject in 1951. Eastman also directed educational films and worked on the Flight Safety series for the Bureau of Aeronautics, U.S.N. while at UPA.
A protégé and colleague of Theodor Geisel by the time the latter had begun using the pen name of Dr. Seuss, Eastman wrote many books for children, in his own distinct style, under the Dr. Seuss brand of Random House, many of which were in the Beginner Books series. His titles include:
- Are You My Mother? (ISBN 0-394-80018-4) (Beginner Book #18)
- Go, Dog. Go! (ISBN 0-394-80020-6) (Beginner Book #20)
- The Best Nest (ISBN 0-394-80051-6) (Beginner Book #51)
- Flap Your Wings (ISBN 0-375-80243-6) (Beginner Book #88)
- The Cat in the Hat Beginner Book Dictionary (ISBN 0-394-81009-0)
- What Time Is It? (ISBN 0-375-81362-4) (Bright and Early Board Books)
- Sam and the Firefly (ISBN 0-394-80006-0) (Beginner Book #6)
- Big Dog...Little Dog (ISBN 0-375-82297-6), with additional illustrations by Peter Anthony Eastman (Beginner Book #92)
- Red, Stop! Green, Go! (ISBN 0-375-82503-7) (Bright and Early Playtime Books)
- Sam and Gus Light Up the Night (ISBN 0-375-82926-1) (Bright and Early Playtime Books)
- My Nest Is Best (ISBN 0-375-83267-X) (Bright and Early Playtime Books)
- The Alphabet Book" (ISBN 0-375-80603-2) (Bright and Early Board Books)
- Big Dog...Little Dog: A Bedtime Story (ISBN 394-83312-0) (Pictureback Series)
He was the illustrator for:
- A Fish Out of Water, written by Helen Palmer Geisel (ISBN 0-394-80023-0) (Beginner Book #23)
- Robert the Rose Horse by Joan Heilbroner (ISBN 0-394-80025-7) (Beginner Book #25)
- I'll Teach My Dog 100 Words by Michael K. Frith (ISBN 0-394-82692-2) (Bright and Early Books #17))
- I'll Teach My Dog a Lot of Words by Michael K. Frith (ISBN 0-375-80099-9) (Bright and Early Board Books)
He wrote, but did not illustrate:
His work is included in:
- The Big Red Book of Beginner Books
- The Big Blue Book of Beginner Books
- The Big Purple Book of Beginner Books
Eastman was married in 1941 to Mary Louise Whitham of Glendale, California. He had two sons, Alan Eastman and Peter Anthony (Tony) Eastman, an animator, who himself directed video adaptations of Richard Scarry's children's books. Peter has also written and illustrated Fred and Ted Go Camping (2005), Fred and Ted Like to Fly (2007), and Fred and Ted's Road Trip (2011), and contributed new illustrations to several reissues of his father's books, The Alphabet Book (2000), Big Dog... Little Dog (2003), Red Stop! Green Go! (2004), and The Cat in the Hat Beginner Book Dictionary (2007).
- Author bio at Bound to Stay Bound Books