The advance reader copy showed up for my new book, “Treasure.

The little square book features simple words and many lovingly drawn tiny treasures to help nature-loving kids learn to read. (Spring 2019)

It started with a newspaper article about a Seattle girl and a neighborhood crow exchanging gifts. Here is an early sketch.

A bird’s eye view

Then a more refined drawing introducing the child

Final color art

Reading = HOPE x CHANGE

Reading = HOPE x CHANGE

Jacqueline Woodson, novelist, poet,
and the 2018-2019 National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature quotes,
“I definitely believe that reading can change us and shape us in so many ways, and through it we can be exposed to people and places and ideas that we might not otherwise come across or confront in real life. A platform about the importance of reading and having conversations across the lines of books is really important to me.”

Please visit to learn more

 download activities for 4-8 years olds, 8-12 years old, or 12-18 years old

One of my favorite books on Jacqueline’s list is The Arrival, by Shaun Tan (Arthur A. Levine Books, 9780439895293).

The masterful story about the experience of immigration is told without words in mysterious sepia drawings that are haunting, surreal and so beautiful.

end pages from The Arrival by Shaun Tan, (Arthur A. Levine Books, 9780439895293)

How the Raven Got His Crooked Nose

“…the book’s creators have accomplished no easy task – a modern retelling of a traditional Dena’ina Athabascan tale that honors the story and makes it accessible to children both within and outside of the culture it comes from.

How Raven Got His Crooked Nose is a teaching tale, as well as a story-within-a-story. Scenes with a modern day Dena’ina Grandmother and Granddaughter working at typical subsistence activies (berry picking, harvesting salmon) alternate withe sudku, or story, of how Raven’s nose became crooked. Artistic style and color palette help clarify the two. Dwyer’s illustrations skillfully weave back and forth between the Raven tale and the contemporary storytelling setting.”

-Ann Dixon/Kid Lit North: Where Raven’s Roam and Writers Dream


Read the whole review with snapshots of the book at

(Peak inside!)

Watch the book trailer!

What book are you reading to celebrate?

The 99th annual Children’s Book Week – April 30th to May 6th

Frederick by Leo Lionni was my favorite picture book.

I loved the cut out shapes and textures and somehow related to Frederick before I knew I was an artist.

I believe that a good children’s book should appeal to all people who have not completely lost their original joy and wonder in life. The fact is that I don’t make books for children at all. I make them for that part of us, of myself and of my friends, which has never changed, which is still a child.
Leo Lionni

Celebrate Children’s Book Week and share a book with someone you love!

Or go and reread your favorite children’s book just for fun.

Free Stuff:

teaching guides

 Every Child A Reader free downloadable pdf of activites

Happy Pub Day to Chulyen the Raven!

“…visually striking …Dwyer’s use of strong contrasting colors brings a fresh, modern sensibility to this tale, while patterns and motifs are suggestive of traditional Dena’ina art.” -Publisher’s Weekly

“…just perfect illustrations…” – Carl’s Pick, Children’s Book Council

…”Dwyer’s illustrations range from soft tones when depicting the modern-day human characters to stark contrasting colors and bold patterns with Chulyen, the trickster raven. Both entertaining and instructive, a refreshing breath of air from the far north.” (Picture book/folktale. 4-8) -Kirkus Review



…”In an especially surreal interlude, Raven changes himself into humanesque form, standing on long, black legs and wearing a feathery blue-black beard.”-Kirkus Review

Watch the book trailer!


Meet Aurora!

She is a hand made doll, stuffed with soft wool. Her clothes are made of cotton, and her hooded kuspuk has a pocket…

…for her silky Northern Lights.

I love you is stitched over her heart just like a Raggedy Ann doll.

Her boots are made from smoked moose hide that I got from a bead artist in Cold Bay, AK.

The lucky little girl who owns her is my new grand daughter!

Right now Aurora is a one of a kind doll, but maybe one day you can have one of your own.

The books are available in paperback.

Shout Out to Fellow Artists

My new hero is Austin Kleon.

I signed up for his newsletter, and got his book SHOW YOUR WORK from the library.

There’s a lot to like– enough to want to hear from him once a week:


-appreciates the creative side of analog, yet is very digital

-draws as he writes

-believes in sharing what you are doing

-sharing what you like about what others are doing


So here’s my shout out to Austin! Thanks!


Every morning I get my cup of coffee and go to my Thinking Chair (like Winnie the Pooh’s log). I have a small lined notebook where I jot down what day it is, and sketch a little banner sized drawing of the sky,

a short to-do list (sometimes a long one) and then have a space to doodle, dream, scribble crazy ideas and then begin my day.


I’ve never been a consistent diary keeper, this practice began as a way to contain the crazy ideas, keep them corralled in a safe place, away from my projects where they get in the way with their silliness and bright shiny newness, pulling at me to procrastinate and be lured away to something fun and absurd. Austin is a believer of these little blurbs and jots. They have a purpose and will grow into bigger things. So now I am happy that I am saving them for some later date when they might come in handy. His are all immediate and posted. Mine are like little seeds in the ground safe in the dark where they are germinating. This practice has now grown into a daily haiku as part of my observation of the sky. At first I wrote whichever 17 syllables popped into my head, now I sit and watch first. I practice observing my surroundings, seeing what I can see and saying something about it in just 17 syllables, 5-7-5. I think I am improving in my ability to observe and accomplish this small task. Every day. Perhaps these small efforts will bloom into something one day?

Along with my thoughts and haikus I added a single frame daily comic. Now I must read the book, How to Read Nancy: The Elements of Comics in Three Easy Panels Paperback – essays by Paul Karasik and Mark Newgarden. According to the cartoonist, Ernis Bushmiller, “Everything that you need to know about reading, making, and understanding comics can be found in a single Nancy strip.”

Daily practice leads to doing work no matter how small, to what it is that I like to do, what I am drawn to and this informs where I want to go.


I’ve heard that Art Speigelman’s studio is kenetic, like an alternative school class room set up with individual work stations where you can freely move around, creating. As your body moves from task to task your brain shifts its muscle memory. I think better with a pencil in my hand. I use the hands-on tools to create the work, then manipulate and finalize on computer.


My three stations:

-comfortable chair for contemplating, doodling, writing

-drawing and painting with real tools (standing or sitting)

-computer with scanner, printer and…a digital pen (standing or sitting)

Now I’ll start paying attention to see where I spend most of my time.


Favorite hands on tools:

-number two pencils with a good eraser.

-Flair markers by Paper mate

-For waterproof ink I love the Faber –Castell ECCO pens.

-Parker fountain pen, inexpensive, never clogs!

Artists and writers have favorite pens…what are yours?

Art for Sale!

“Carnival” original watercolor from The Salmon Princess, $100“Swimming Home”, 17″ x 24″ Giclee print, 2 @ $75 each SOLD!“Stepping Into Spring”, 16″ x 18″ Giclee print, 5 @ $25 each“Cleaning Salmon”, 16″ x 19″, Giclee print, 1 @ $45 each“Carousel”, 17″ x 20″ Giclee print, 1 @ $45 each SOLD!“Her Eyes Sparked Like Fire”, 18″ x 28″, Giclee Print, 2 @ $55 each

Please send an email to to purchase a print.