Winnie-the-Pooh creator A.A. Milne was born on this day in 1882. Together with E.H. Shepard (1879-1976), a gifted illustrator, they created a timeless world of stories and images that have charmed generations of children as well as adults, and which still resonate today.
Shepard was recommended to Milne in 1923 by a staff of Punch magazine, E. V. Lucas. Milne initially thought Shepard’s style was not what he wanted, but used him to illustrate the book of poems When We Were Very Young. Happy with the results, Milne then roped in Shepard to illustrate Winnie-the-Pooh. The book debuted in 1926 in London and New York, and was an instant hit.
In this post, I pay tribute to the genius of Milne and Shepard with a photo gallery of Shepard’s original illustrations in the 1920s revealing how the story of “the bear” and his coterie of friends came to be. Hope you will enjoy reading this post as much as I had compiling it.