John Hendrix is a New York Times best-selling illustrator and author of many children’s books, including Shooting at the Stars, Drawing is Magic, John Brown: His Fight for Freedom, Miracle Man: The Story of Jesus, and The Faithful Spy: Dietrich Bonhoeffer and the Plot to Kill Hitler. His illustrations have appeared on book jackets, newspapers and magazines all over the country. Hendrix is the Kenneth E. Hudson Professor of Art, teaching illustration at the Sam Fox School, where he is founding chair of the MFA in Illustration & Visual Culture program.
Hendrix’s work has appeared in numerous publications, such as Newsweek, Sports Illustrated, Entertainment Weekly, Rolling Stone, The New Yorker, Esquire, The New York Times, and Time Magazine, and National Geographic, among many others. He has also drawn book jackets for the likes of Scholastic, Random House, Simon & Schuster, Harper Collins, Greenwillow Books, Knopf, Penguin, and Abrams Books. His images also appeared in advertising campaigns for ESPN/ABC, AT&T, and Target/Star Wars. Hendrix’s drawings have won numerous awards, including Silver Medals from Society of Illustrators in 2006, 2008, and 2015. In 2018, his book The Faithful Spy won a Gold Medal from the Society of Illustrators. The book was also called a Best Book of 2018 by NPR and School Library Journal. His images have also appeared in the annual award publications, 3x3, American Illustration, Society of Illustrators, Society for Publication Design, Communication Arts, AIGA 50 Books/50 Covers Show, and Print’s Regional Design Annual.
In 2012, Hendrix served as President of ICON7: The Illustration Conference, a biennial global summit for the illustration community, and before that as Vice President of ICON6 in 2010. He also chaired The Society of Illustrators 55th Annual Show, the illustration industry’s longest-running and most prestigious juried show.
His first picture book Abe Lincoln Crosses a Creek, was named and ALA Notable book of 2008 and won the Comstock Award for read aloud books. Hendrix’s book John Brown: His Fight for Freedom, the first he had both written and illustrated, won the Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Gold Seal and was named one of the “Best Books of 2009” by Publisher’s Weekly. About his 2016 book Miracle Man: The Story of Jesus, The New York Times said, “… even nonbelievers will enjoy this powerfully told and visually dazzling book.”
Born in the gritty midwestern suburbs of St. Louis, Hendrix attended The University of Kansas to study graphic design and illustration. He graduated with a degree in Rock Chalk and Visual Communication in 1999. After working for a few years as a designer, he moved from Kansas to New York City. He attended The School of Visual Arts MFA in Illustration as Visual Essay program and graduated in 2003 with some honors and some debt. During his time living and working in New York, Hendrix taught design at the Parsons School of Design and worked at The New York Times as assistant art director of the Op-Ed page for several years.
Hendrix has presented his work and drawings in many places: Miami Book Festival, The Festival of Faith & Writing, Hutchmoot: The Rabbit Room’s Annual Conference of art, music and faith, The Southern Festival of Books, SCBWI Conference, Church NEXT Conference - Story Conference, Nashville - Q Commons St. Louis, The National Archives in Washington D.C., and The National World War I Museum, among many others. His sketchbook drawings from church have been featured in Christianity Today and Smithsonian Magazine. He lives in the St. Louis with his wife Andrea, son Jack, daughter Annie, dog Pepper, and cats Kit-Kat and Luna.