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Tessa Cobb

Author, Illustrator

About Tessa Cobb

Tessa Cobb is a children’s book illustrator and author, living in Bath where she also works as a Publishing tutor at Bath Spa University. Starting out with a BA in Economics from the University of Cambridge, Tessa now harnesses her passion for thinking about choice in a much more creative and colourful way for young people. She recently graduated from the MA in Children’s Book Illustration at Cambridge School of Art in 2024.

Tessa’s artwork is made from a joyful place, using limited colour palettes and mark-making to embody emotions on the page. She works using a mixture of media including monoprint, painting and collage to create atmospheric places and expressive human and animal characters. Observational drawing is key to her process, and Tessa’s favourite things to draw are wild swimming women and tropical birds.

Tessa developed 4 narrative non-fiction and picture book projects during her MA based on themes and relationships that light up her own life. One of her MA projects, WHY I SWIM, about a cold river dip, was selected for the DPictus Unpublished Picturebook Showcase 5. Another project, QUEEN OF THE STARS, highlights that wonderful insignificance we feel when comparing ourselves to the vastness of the night’s sky, and was longlisted for the DPictus Showcase.

Before her MA Tessa started a small press, The Happy Book Company, making children’s books about choosing happiness. Her book GEOFFREY FINDS A BIKE came runner-up in the Stratford Salariya Picturebook Prize 2021. Tessa draws on her experience as a Geography teacher to hold regular school events, and hosted Bath Children’s Literature Festival’s happiness hub in 2022 and 2023.

When she’s not making books about happiness, she’s learning about it at a happiness research centre in the Peruvian Amazon. Tessa takes part in annual collective art festivals with her jungle family providing boundless inspiration for her nature-based books.