The Children's Book Council named James E. Ransome as one of 75 authors and illustrators everyone should know. Currently a member of the Society of Illustrators, Ransome has received both the Coretta Scott King Award for Illustration and the IBBY Honor Award for his book The Creation (Holiday House Inc). He has also received a Coretta Scott King Honor Award for Illustration for Uncle Jed's Barbershop (Simon & Schuster), which was selected as an ALA Notable Book and is currently being shown as a feature on Reading Rainbow. How Many Stars in the Sky? (San Val Inc.) and Sweet Clara and the Freedom Quilt (Random House Children's Books) were also Reading Rainbow selections. PBS's Storytime featured his book The Old Dog (HarperCollins).
Ransome has exhibited works in group and solo shows throughout the country and received the Simon Wiesenthal Museum of Tolerance award for his book The Wagon (HarperCollins). In 1999 Let My People Go (Simon & Schuster) received the NAACP Image Award for Illustration and Satchel Paige (Simon & Schuster) was reviewed in Bank Street College of Education's "The Best Children's Books of the Year." In 2001 James received the Rip Van Winkle Award from the School Library Media Specialists of Southeast New York for the body of his work.
How Animals Saved the People (HarperCollins) received the SEBA (Southeastern Book Association) Best Book of the Year Award in 2002, and the Vermont Center for the Book chose Visiting Day as one of the top 10 diversity books of 2002. In 2004 James was recognized by the local art association when he received the Dutchess County Executive Arts Award for an Individual Artist. He has completed several commissioned murals for the Children's Museum in Indianapolis, the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center in Cincinnati and the Hemphill Branch Library in Greensboro, N.C. He created a historical painting commissioned by a jury for the Paterson, N.J., Library and a poster for the 50th Anniversary Celebration of 1954 Supreme Court decision Brown vs. the Board of Education. His traveling exhibit, "Visual Stories," has been touring the United States since 2003. His work is part of both private and public children's book art collections.
He lives in Rhinebeck, N.Y., with his wife, Lesa Cline Ransome, a writer of children's books. They have collaborated on a number of books together, the first being Satchel Paige. Others include Major Taylor (Simon & Schuster), Quilt Alphabet (Holiday House Inc.), Quilt Counting (North-South Books) and Pele (Random House Children's Books). They have four children.
More books illustrated by James Ransome:
“Sky Boys: How They Built the Empire State Building” written by Deborah Hopkinson (Random House)
“Freedom Roads: Searching for the Underground Railroad” written by Joyce Hansen and Gary McGowan (Cricket Books)