Eric Carle: Facts and Information

Here are some facts about Eric Carle.

  • Eric Carle is best known for being a children’s author, although he is also an illustrator and designer. He has written and illustrated over 60 books.
  • His most famous book is The Very Hungry Caterpillar. Since its publication in 1969, the picture book has sold over 38 million copies and been translated into almost 60 languages.

  • He was born in June, 1929 in Syracuse, New York. His family moved back to their native Germany when Eric was 6, and he was recruited by the German army to dig trenches for the war effort.
  • He returned to the US in 1952 as he was homesick. He worked as a graphic designer for the New York Times and fought for the US Army during the Korean War.
  • One of Carle’s first successes was the book Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? Although the book had no plot, it featured such animals as Blue Horse and Purple Cat.
  • Many of his books are based on his love and knowledge of nature.
  • Carle often uses collage in his books and is known for his use of bright colours, foldouts and different textures.
  • Eric Carle designed a logo for the search engine Google. The logo, featuring letters looking like fruit, was used on their homepage to celebrate spring 2009.
  • He was awarded the Laura Ingalls Wilder award in 2003 for his contributions to children’s reading. In 2007 he received a doctorate from Bates College in Maine.
  • As well as writing and illustrating, Eric Carle has found time to introduce a line of children’s games, puzzles and stuffed toys. He has also designed a fabric pattern, using images from some of his books.
  • The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art was opened in Amherst, MA in 2002. It boasts over 10,000 drawings from children’s books from around the world.