Simms Taback was born February 13, 1932. Taback grew up in New York, studying art at the High School of Music and Art and Cooper Union.
He worked as a graphic designer, an art director for an advertising agency, and a partner in a design firm. His grandchildren are still impressed that he designed McDonald’s first Happy Meal box!
Taback has illustrated some 35 books for children. Two have been cited for the New York Times Ten Best Illustrated list. There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly won a Caldecott Honor in 1998. Joseph Had a Little Overcoat was awarded the Caldecott Medal in 2000.
A colleague who shared a studio with him for many years described him as “a patient perfectionist who produces thousands of gorgeous character and scene sketches for a forthcoming book.” His works are included in the Kerlan Collection at the University of Minnesota. Simms Taback died December 25, 2011.