Drawing Arthur all these years…
Posted on: February 15th, 2015 by Marc Brown 23 Comments

Arthur has changed over the years, have you noticed? When I first drew him for my son in 1976, he looked more like an aardvark. He had a very long nose and that’s where the idea for the very first Arthur story started. He was worried about his nose and wanted to change it because it was giving him all kinds of trouble. Arthur has many problems in his life as we all do but it’s always fun to see how he deals with his problems and solves them.

I’ve been drawing Arthur now for almost 40 years and the more I drew him, the rounder his head became. His nose got shorter and he began to look more human. Over the years I got to know Arthur better and better. He, and all the characters I write about in Arthur’s world came from real people I grew up with and knew as a child. I think that’s one reason so many kids can identify with my characters. I hope you’ll enjoy this film about how I draw my characters. And I hope it will also inspire you to draw and invent some characters of your own.

I can’t imagine a day when I don’t draw or doodle. In first grade, I got in trouble for drawing in school. My friend, Alan liked to see me draw race cars and rocket ships but my teacher thought I should be doing my school work. And in fourth grade I got into trouble for daydreaming too much. And today my job is daydreaming and drawing. I wonder if my teachers would be surprised to know that I turned out just fine, even though I’m drawing and daydreaming.

Although I write many books and am considered an author, my favorite part of telling the story is with the pictures. So, I guess I consider myself more of an illustrator than an author. It just so happens that I have to write the story so i can illustrate it. And I want you to know how lucky I feel each morning when I go to my studio. I get to do what I love, writing and illustrating stories that many kids enjoy reading.

I never imagined that my books would turn into a television series. Soon it will be twenty years that Arthur has been one of the most popular children’s shows on PBS. He is now the longest running children’s animated TV show in history. Right now we are working on more new episodes for you to watch.

I want to thank you for reading my books and watching my TV shows

Your friend,
Marc Brown

23 Responses

  1. Ben says:

    Arthur is the best! He is a very fun TV character and show to watch. Will any more Arthur books come to iBooks soon?

    • Marc Brown says:

      We are hard at work on new Arthur episodes, Ben. We are also hard at work on more Arthur books for iBooks and Kindle.

  2. Kamie says:

    I am an art teacher and love your tutorials at the end of some of your episodes. It allows the kids to gain confidence in their skills. It was great growing up with your show and books. I now have a little one who loves Arthur as well. You have inspired generations and I look forward to everything you do.

  3. Ava says:

    I am doing a report on my favorite author- you! What kind of books did you like to read when you were a kid?
    Thank you,
    Ava

    • Marc Brown says:

      I loved and still do, biographies and books about American history.
      Good luck with your report!

      Marc Brown

  4. Lauren says:

    I am a college student studying Early Childhood Education and I am actually presenting a powerpoint presentation on you! I grew up watching and reading Arthur and many other books you wrote. Your texts were very entertaining and relatable to me as a child and I know when I start teaching I will definitely use your books! I was wondering if you could tell me what was one of the most surprising things you learned in creating your books and which book is your favorite?

    • Marc Brown says:

      Hi Lauren,

      I would have to say that I still enjoy reading ARTHUR’S TEACHER TROUBLE to kids. But after writing and illustrating Arthur stories for 35 years, I’ve given myself permission to have some fun doing other kinds of illustrations and writing other stories. I’ve never been happier.

      Good luck with your presentation!

      Marc Brown

  5. Lily says:

    When I was a little girl, my favorite books to read were the Arthur books. You have been one of the most influential illustrators that has inspired me to become a children’s book illustrator.I got hired to illustrate my first children’s book a couple weeks ago! Im going to be graduating art school in a week so I think this is turning into an okay path so far if you ask me 🙂 I would like to thank you Marc for all that you have done. Thank you for creating these wonderful pictures and placing it into a little dreamers hands. Congratulations to you and Arthur on your success and I look forward to seeing what you come up with in the future 🙂

    Best,
    Lily

  6. Nehemiah Unimuke says:

    When will the show`s series finale be airing?

  7. Nehemiah Unimuke says:

    when will the rest of season 18 of arthur air on pbs.

    • Marc Brown says:

      Hi Nehemiah,

      The new shows always begin in September. We are already in the process of making new shows for next year and the year after that!

      Thanks for watching,
      Marc Brown

  8. Nehemiah says:

    Dear Marc,
    Someone on facebook said that there season 20 would be the last season of the show. I`m 12 years and born in the 2000s. I loved Arthur. It was the first show I ever loved. My first episode was Arthur`s Eyes/ Francines Bad Hair Day. If this is your last season, please air reruns of it because I want to show my children when I grow up in the future. Marc thanks. everytime I saw you on TV AND THE EPISODES YOU MAKE THEY ALWAYS HELPED ME AT SCHOOL AND WITH MY FAMILY. tHANKS mARC. Is season 20 really your last season?

    Nehemiah

    • Marc Brown says:

      Rumors are always trouble. Not true.
      And thank you for enjoying and supporting the Arthur show, Nehemiah!

  9. Vincent says:

    Thank you for creating the best show ever made!

  10. Ian says:

    Dear Mr. Brown,
    I love the Arthur books and cartoon. I like to draw Arthur too. I was wondering if you would answer a few questions for me. . . What seasons of Arthur were drawn by hand and which ones are done on a computer? How long do they take to make? Where do you get ideas for shows and your books? Thank you for the gift of Arthur and the lessons he shows us.
    Respectfully,
    Ian

  11. Ricardo says:

    Are you going to create any new characters?

  12. Amanda says:

    Hi Mr. Brown, I just wanted to say thank you so much for all of the Arthur adventures, in books and on tv, that you have given us over the years! It is a Christmas tradition of mine to read “Arthur’s Christmas”, and then turn back to page one to search for Tolon and Tucker’s names hidden in the illustrations (this tradition made me especially excited when I saw Tolon’s name in the credits of the show). My family has been watching Arthur’s show ever since it aired. Even though I am turning 26 this year, the show is still one of my favorites. My mom, older sister, and I continually enjoy reruns and are very happy to know there will be new episodes in 2016. We can always count on Arthur and his friends to make us smile and help us forget our troubles and stress. For all that you’ve done in the past and continue to do into the future, THANK YOU! Sincerely, Amanda & Family

  13. Tisha says:

    I LOVE ARTHUR! I have been watching Arthur since it first aired and have seen every episode, i am now 25 years old and still watch it. I’m so excited for season 20, can’t wait for it to be aired!

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