Originally from the Cotswolds, Polly Dunbar graduated from the University of Brighton Faculty of Arts with a BA(Hons) Illustration in 1999 and continues to live and work in Brighton.
Her first two books were published when she was just sixteen; cartoons inspired by teenage antics: Help I'm out with the in-crowd and Help I've forgotten my Brain, both published by Kingfisher (1996). She has been writing and illustrating ever since, successfully publishing her work while still an undergraduate.
Dunbar‘s illustrations are whimsical and humourous. A series of books entitled The Hole Story (2002) telling the ‘whole story’ of three famous characters have covers warning readers of “ghosts, ghouls and gore” within. Her work has been published in over 26 books, many of which she has written and illustrated herself, including Dog Blue (2004) Fly Away Katie (2004), Penguin (2007) and Arthur’s Dream Boat (2012).
Polly’s series of books Tilly and Friends has been made into a 52 part animation series launching on Cbeebies in Autumn 2012.
A newspaper reviewer described, Fly away Katie book as being “Painted with panache and joy and written with deft minimalism, the colourful Fly away Katie is as close to genius as one finds in the genre.”
Since 2005, Dunbar has collaborated with fellow Brighton Illustration graduate and puppeteer Katherine Morton on Long Nose Puppets, creating inspiring, inventive and colourful puppet shows for very young children. Dunbar and Morton studied illustration together, often creating stories, characters and making puppets together. Long Nose Puppets tour festivals, including Edinburgh and Brighton, where they won Best Children’s show in 2006.