Kathryn Freeman


I wrote and illustrated Mr. Hubbard’s Heart for people of all ages. The inspiration for the story came one day in 1995 when I was walking in the city with my two small children. A homeless man huddled in a doorway shouted at us as we walked past him. We were startled, and my children were saddened that the man was cold and alone. I began to tell them all the possible reasons that a person might find himself in that place in life, and Mr. Hubbard was born. I continued to work on the story off and on for many years, adding text and paintings until I felt that Mr. Hubbard’s story had been told. The form of the story is based on early Renaissance altarpieces, in which episodes from the life of a saint are depicted in little predella paintings that lie below a much larger painting of the saint above. The paintings for this story are done in gouache on board. All the animals are based on creatures I have known and loved. The story confirms my belief that humans and animals need each other