Growing up in Southern California, Shelley Couvillion's interest in the relationship between words and pictures started young. Shelley loved to listen to her mother read books aloud about all manner of things, from the Seals of Antarctica to The Little House on the Prairie. Shelley has always struggled with two seemingly opposing pulls in her life. Wanting to be the character with the sword, and wanting to be someone’s mom. Now that she is a mom, she’s decided there’s nothing wrong with being both and wants her daughter to grow up in a culture where being kick-butt and a girl aren’t mutually exclusive.
While still in high school, Shelley drew her way into the Santa Ana Community College Art Department. While there she received the Art Department Award for Sculpture, Excellence Award for Sculpture, Art Promotion League Award for Life Drawing, and the Fred and Barbara Meiers Memorial Award for Painting. Shelley has since joined The Society of Illustrators of Los Angeles and begun showing her work in the local galleries, at comic conventions and pursuing work as a children's illustrator for books and magazines. She also drew 83 pages of a web comic titled House On Writer’s Block. You can find some of her recent work on the cover of local author Robin Puelma’s books The Missing Crimoire and The Naming of Colton Black.
Her work is inquisitive, layered and often described as enchanting. Her characters create a sense of joy while her environments inspire a sense of wonder. The use of watercolor in her work tends to depict a soft and inviting quality. Making her work easy to fall into and exciting to explore. Though she feels it's less of a struggle to relinquish control in her daily life, she is compelled to construct every line, petal and cheek with utmost care. Recently she’s started to work in gouache which plays to her strength of control. But she also sees the benefit of a more relaxed brush and hopes to continue incorporating those movements into her work. Shelley plans to continue to strengthen her visual storytelling abilities and looks forward to illustrating for children's magazines such as Cricket, Muse and Illustroia, while also pursuing opportunities to illustrate children's books.